In Normandy Isles

The Labor Day holiday weekend is here, and that means that what would normally have been a busy Sunday of running errands need not be so hectic. Considering how the weather has been for the past week, we were surprised to see that by the early afternoon the sun was still shinning strong and the sky was bright blue, so we hopped on the bikes to go out for a ride. There’s a new farmer’s market that opened near us, and we wanted to go check it out.

G&P Farmer’s Market, located on the corner of Abbot Ave and 72 St, is owned by a young Israeli family, much to our surprise. They are used to buying produce in a market setting in Israel, and they wanted to bring that same concept to this area of the Beach (which has no such market, and no, I am not counting the Saturday “farmer’s” market on Normandy Isles as that is, for the most part, a display of Costco merchandise). Their prices are phenomenal, and they have a great selection of vegetables and fruits, all wonderfully looking. I asked about the source of the produce, and was told they purchase in Downtown Miami from farms down in Homestead and up in West Palm Beach. They also have plans to offer fresh fish (also sourced from local fishermen) and to have a small bakery. We bought a few kitchen essentials and spent under $5. As we told the owner, you’ll see us around a lot more.

Errands done, we brought the produce back to the house, and since the sun was still shinning (in fact, yesterday was a gorgeous day in Miami Beach) we went out to ride some more. Not having a destination in mind, we decided to run in the Normandy Shores Golf Club course. The course underwent a massive renovation over the past year or so and, at least earlier this year, before its reinauguration, it was a great place to ride: a network of smooth, paved paths winding in and out for the length of the course, providing a very serene place for a leisurely ride. That’s all gone. The golf club has officially reopened and given it’s the holiday weekend, the place was packed with people in polo shirts and shorts hitting tiny white balls with sticks.

I don’t care for golf, and frankly, I liked the park better when it was closed and enjoyed by leisure cyclists, roller skaters, walkers and joggers, and by the people of the area in general. Though it is a public park, I guess the technicality is that it is a public golf course where anyone can play without membership. Meh, I’d much rather have the public park space with facilities for riding, something North Beach lacks.

We took a ride down the length of Normandy Shores isle, marveling at the horrible driving skills of the residents and then, after a beer pit-stop (Blue Moon Belgian White wheat ale, for those who were wondering) at the new Triton Supermarket on Normandy Dr, we went back home, happy to have had a chance to ride our bikes (especially Yvette, who hadn’t been able to ride Willow for a while!). The ride also had something of a catharsis to it, seeing how it’s (just a day short of) the anniversary of a really bad biking accident last year.

A great ride on a great afternoon.

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