Attending a Miami Marlins Game at Their New Stadium – 2

Goodness me, it has been so many years since I studied figures of speech in English grammar that I no longer trust my ability to distinguish between a metaphor and a simile.

I mentioned in my previous post that I thoroughly enjoyed the game and that the stadium was magnificent, but the process of going-to and coming-from were not nearly as pleasant.  The overall experience was like eating a sandwich in which the filling was quite tasty but both slices of bread were stale.  I believe that statement is a simile – – or not!   😆  In either event I think it describes the experience well.

But before I go into the slices of bread, here are some of the photos I took at the game and one more video.  To appreciate the size of the stadium it would be best to click the photos to enlarge them.  I’ll post more photos tomorrow.

This is view from the parking garage.  The windows are directly behind left field giving a view of Miami’s downtown skyline from inside the stadium.

View from between the parking garage on the left and the stadium.  The windows are directly behind center field.  A second parking garage can be seen on the left in the distance.  Two identical parking garages are located at the opposite side of the stadium.

View from my seat in the first row of the nosebleed section.  The Marlins have runners on first and third.  They were wearing their ‘pumpkin’ shirts that game.

View from my seat almost an hour before game time – thus all the empty seats – looking towards left field.  Back-lighting reduced the clarity of the view of downtown.

This monstrosity thingie behind the left center field fence goes off whenever a Marlin hits a home run and after they win a game. Lights flash, water sprays, music plays and the fish leap up, over and down the panels. The red area is a large TV screen which displays scores of other games and other info throughout the game.

Here I was standing by the windows behind left field looking at the downtown skyline.  The windows are on huge panels which slide along giant tracks, opening and closing like the sliding glass doors to my patio.  The stadium can therefore use different combinations of roof and windows open and closed depending on the weather.

This is a video of the monstrosity thingie going off at the completion of the game to celebrate victory.

Now, to the bread.  The 21 mile route from my house to the stadium appeared to be very simple on the map.  My house to the Florida Turnpike – south to Interstate 95 – south to Route 836, (also Interstate 395)  the Dolphin Expressway  – west to NW 12th Avenue – south to NW4th Street – west to NW 14th Avenue – south to Parking Garage entrance.  Piece of Cake!  Easy as Pie!  Only problem could be traffic.  But surely at mid-day of a weekday well more than an hour before game time traffic will not be a problem.  Hmmmmmm……….

Everything was fine  until I approached the ramp from Interstate 95 to the westbound Dolphin Expressway – traffic came to almost a standstill, only periodically inching forward.  But – no problemo – I was in the right lane, ideal for me to merge into the expressway and subsequently take the first exit.  But, soon I had progressed enough to find that my lane was headed to an exit to NW 14th Street before even merging into the expressway.

It took a while but eventually I was able to force my way into the lane to my left just before having to exit.  Whew!  Back on track – not quite.  I realized that I was in a lane which would force me to turn right on 12th Avenue (Here I will stop adding the NW – all the roads in that area are in the NW quadrant of the city) and I had to turn left.  Another agonizing shift to the next lane on the left.  Such lane changes are extremely difficult when cars are bumper to bumper and barely moving.  One either has to hope to appeal to the better nature of someone to make room for you or one has to throw caution to the wind, start the transition and hope the driver being cut off wants to avoid a collision!

Time passed and I was finally in the right lane on 12th Avenue headed south – Whew, again.  Except – OMG! OMG!  I’m in a right turn only lane!  If I make that right turn it could be forever before I can maneuver myself back around to 12th Avenue north of the ramp from the expressway.  12th Avenue provides the only access to my parking garage.

But, the Lord was with me and I was once again able to worm my way into the next lane before being forced to turn.  Then it was smooth, but slow, sailing to the garage where uniformed attendants guided me to a spot on the 4th level.

One more interesting thing.  All four parking garages were designed to have shops and restaurants at street level on the side facing away from the stadium so there was a steep up ramp to the first parking level.  I was thinking as I inched forward on the up ramp a foot or two at a time, if I had a standard transmission I would possibly be risking burning out the clutch, or falling backward while engaging the clutch at the same moment the person behind me was advancing.  – CRUNCH!!!

Ah, I don’t even want to think about that!  In fact, reliving the experience of driving to the game has been so traumatic that I have decided to leave the description of the drive home, which was much worse,  until the next post!

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