Shinji Kasai / Marubeni Business Machines (America), Inc.
What comes to mind when you hear the word, Miami? A great number of Latinos live in Miami, giving it the epithet, "the Capital of Latin America." Spanish always appears next to English in restaurants and hotels. In some areas, signboards on the street carry only Spanish, creating the temporary illusion that you are no longer in the United States. People in Miami reflect the cheerful nature of the Latinos-don't pay much attention to trifling things (or put differently, "easy going") and rarely be on time. The visitor is initially taken aback but, strangely enough, one slowly becomes accustomed to their ways.
In the neighborhoods of Miami, you can enjoy the four biggest professional sports. In baseball, the local team, the Florida Marines, won the world championship in 2003. In football, there is the prestigious Miami Dolphins. The team's form has experienced a recent slump, but the stadium is always packed. Miami has local professional teams in basketball and hockey as well.
Another attraction is fishing. Some wealthier people enjoy trolling on the cruiser, while others casually take pleasure fishing on the seashore near their homes.
Incidentally, a hurricane is by far the most horrifying thing in Miami. People often ask me, "What is the difference between a hurricane and a typhoon in Japan?" Basically, you can regard a hurricane as a large or huge typhoon. When a hurricane is approaching, you only see and hear coverage of the hurricane on the TV and radio. Long queues immediately form at gas station, and water, emergency foodstuffs and batteries disappear from supermarket shelves in seconds. The tremendous damage that Katrina caused when it lashed New Orleans at the end of August last year is still fresh in people's memories. You feel very nervous when a hurricane is about to hit. When I think about the people who lived in the damaged area, I feel that it should stand as a warning to us, as well.
It is impossible to write about all the attractions that Miami, the southernmost major city in the United States, has to offer. It is definitely worth visiting once. I recommend the warm winter from November to February for your visit because it rains a lot in summer.
Marubeni Group magazine "M-SPIRIT" VOL.31 (January, 2006)