Three Cheers for the Red, White, and Green

She has seen the future — and it's in Spanish

At the long red table running the length of the patio, Fred and Frank sat side by side, their white hair and aged faces throwing them in sharp contrast to the smooth-skinned partiers congregating around them.

"What are you guys doing out here tonight?" I asked them, grabbing a seat across from Fred, who wore a T-shirt and whose forehead was only slightly bald.

"I'm glad you speak English," Fred said. "It's nice to hear something other than all this Portuguese. We don't have to work tomorrow — it's Memorial Day — so we thought we'd come out here to catch up."

"There's a Memorial Day party going on here," I said. "What do you guys think?"

"It's pretty crazy," Fred said. "But we're having fun. Frank and I haven't seen each other in 50 years."

"Well, we had our own lives," said Frank, who has thick white hair and wore a collared shirt and jeans. "We saw each other occasionally, but until now, we never had the chance to catch up."

"Yeah, we are just reminiscing about the old days — you'd have loved it back then," Fred said. "We'd block off U.S. 1 to have drag races, and there were big community parties with hundreds of girls just waiting to be picked up. Those were the good old days. Better days."

As the two old friends sipped Coronas, I got the feeling they were genuinely glad to be celebrating a Memorial weekend out on the town — despite the frenzied, untraditional party raging around them. And I guess there's some message in there, about diversity in America and cultures coming together. Memorial Day is what you make it, si, hombre? Also worth mentioning is Crabby Jack's key lime pie — despite a sometimes jarringly cosmopolitan evening at a packed bar, the high point of my Sunday was the deliciousness of that pie. Maybe if I were a true American, I'd have asked for apple pie, but I do like a little diversity.

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