On the Road to Miami by Cole Spivak
Day 1. Around 1:30 pm, I grab my suitcase and walk outside. There waiting are three friends—all girls, a green, run-down Ford Focus, 2 cases of beer and other supplies that will hopefully make for an interesting trip. We pack up the car and begin our drive to our first stop, North Carolina. Our ‘Spring Break 2015’ started. Unfortunately, the radio doesn’t work. The GPS says it will take 5 hours to get to our destination, not too bad I guess. The GPS doesn’t consider we stop at every gas station along Interstate 95. This adds an extra 4 hours to our trip. We get to one of the girl’s Aunt and Uncle’s house, who are kindly letting us stay the night. What I don’t know is this will be the nicest place I will sleep the entire trip.
Day 2. These girls were not human. They do not sleep. 6:30 wake up call. We raid the pantry for food and steal a box of 100 “Fruit by the Foots.” Next stop, Gainesville, Florida. My girlfriend’s best friends from high school live here so we figure we will stop in for a night. Somehow, we make it there. First plan of action, we all shotgun a beer. They must have been shaken up because one by one, they explode all over everyone’s face. Nothing says Spring Break like a Battleship Potemkin beer montage. We go out for dinner, a tour of Gainesville, and a quick line dance at some dance marathon fundraiser.
Day 3. My back aches. Who makes an air mattress where all the air escapes while you sleep? Is this some kind of sick joke? Next stop, Tampa. We all crash at my girlfriend’s house for a couple of days. It is nice to get a home-cooked meal. The car needs oil. We take it in. We find out there is only one lug nut holding the front wheel on. No wonder the car had felt shaky when we pushed past seventy. Near death experience.
Day 4. Disneyland! We decide to hit up Hollywood Studios for the day. The drive to Orlando is not fun. The air-conditioning in the car blows out. I guess it’s a “windows down” kind of ride from now on. Who can’t have fun at Disney? Tower of Terror, Rock n’ Roll Rollercoaster. We meet up with another friend for the day. It was nice to see her again. She isn’t a big fan of waiting in lines. We are standing there for about 20 minutes and she vomits everywhere. Everyone moves out of the way and we get right to the front. The day is fun.
Day 5. Finally. Miami. We are heading down to meet up with my best buddy from high school and his brother. Great kids, they fit right in down there. Miami isn’t what I expected. I expected to hop out of the car and instantly be enraptured by parties on the beach. Instead, the first guy I met on the street asked me if I want various illegal substances. I don’t. Maybe it’ll get better. Six of us cram into a hotel room with two beds. Naturally, I sleep on the floor.
Day 6. Beach day. The girls leave that afternoon to go visit a cousin. They end up sleeping in the car, as the cousin’s place isn’t “tidy enough”. Luckily, I stay at the hotel with a great cable TV. Miami Heat versus the Portland Trail Blazers. What a game. Next stop, the casino. I don’t know why we thought this would be a good idea. The neighborhood is sketchy. I come out on top —, for me all is good. Meanwhile though my friend goes up $250.00 in blackjack and bets it all on one hand. He loses. That Queen is going to haunt him for the rest of his life.
Day 7. Deep Sea Fishing. This day will make up for all the things we went through earlier. We meet up with two other guys from high school and take a private fishing charter out. I can’t say too much about the trip, except that it was heaven on earth. I will leave the rest to your imagination.
The last push. We travel back to Tampa to spend the remainder of our trip. We hang out with some friends, crash a 50 year old man’s birthday party, go to Busch Garden’s and much more. On the road again. I felt the trip up to this point was a success. I guess we couldn’t end the trip without a run in with the police. One of the girls is getting their first speeding ticket. I think she is trying to get as far away from Florida as quick as possible. On our way back we stop in North Carolina again for the night. It feels great to sleep in a nice bed again. Trip over, It was one of the most random travel experiences I’ve ever had. How to top it next year? I start planning now.
Cole Spivak is a Baltimore based writer and director. While attending Johns Hopkins University, Cole developed a fascination in story telling and the arts and wants to share it with the world.