Sunday, 1 April 2018

Misplaced Magnificence in Miami? (2)

Flagler's Mega-Project 2018 Style!
This was Miami in about 1900!
This was Henry Flagler's hotel built at about the same time ...
... and this was his central Miami railway station ...
... sometime after 1925. Here is Miami a few years on, undated but possibly 1940s.
The tower with the pointy top is still there, upper right; and here ...
... is just a titchy bit of Miami today. You do wonder what Mr Flagler would think if he could see his baby now! What he couldn't see is his centrally located station. After passenger services ceased, the formation was snaffled for road and metro development.

If you travel to Miami today you might use Tri-Rail which will deposit you at the airport interchange ...
... from here you could take the Metro "downtown" (to the city centre), or a people mover ...
... on an overhead track to the airport itself.
Or you could change from Tri-Rail to the green Line at a station called, erm, "Tri-Rail".
Metrorail is on stilts ...
... and super modern, whilst Tri-Rail bumbles underneath via a level crossing (at grade - US!).
But perhaps you will choose to arrive by Amtrak ...
... thus enjoying a more relaxed journey than being herded like recalcitrant sheep onto a plane.
Amtrak has a separate station a little north of the Tri-Rail stop called Tri-Rail. fbb would not call it an attractive location for an important (?) railway service ...
... but here your "Silver Service" will deposit you far from the city centre and away from the Tri-Rail and Metroline connections which would involve a walk or taxi (cab - US).
Remember the tower block with the pointy top? That is now an "historic building" more correctly known as the Dade County Courthouse.
It stands near Flagler's former station and next to the site of the brand new central Miami teminus which will serve another bit of Tri-Rail and the new Brightline service.
Only it isn't built yet.
Construction is proceeding apace on the areas outlined in yellow in the picture above (courthouse bottom right). When it is all finished, it will be the terminus for the new Brightline service and will look like this:-
Yep! Our "Enery would be proud to bits to see the rebirth of his Miami vision.

But where is Brightline, as visited by Modern Railways editor James Abbott?
Ritzy commuting to Miami is not yet available!

 Next Brightline blog : Monday 2nd April 
Easter Day : The day we eat chocolate, find Easter eggs and enthuse over fluffy bunnies. Oddly we still have roast lamb for dinner - which goes back to the Bible about 3000 years ago when the Children of Israel ate the sacrificial lamb before escaping from slavery in Egypt.

Odd how these traditions survive when the reason for them is long gone!
It is easy, in our near secular society, to denigrate the Resurrection of Jesus on the first Easter Day. It is scientifically impossible, the disciples stole the body, it was just a fairy story, only a naive idiot believes such a crackpot idea.

The FACT that the tomb was empty is recorded in documents that are far more reliable than many sources that fill our history books. 

Of course it is scientifically IMPOSSIBLE - but that doesn't men it didn't happen. By definition God is beyond earthly space, time and science; so he can do whatever he wants. Resurrection, easy peasy! Water into wine, no probs!

There are plenty of scientific theories that are far more weird than a simple resurrection. Strings, superstrings, M-branes, P-branes (etc) are the wondrous outpourings of minds like that of the late Stephen Hawking. But they remain unprovable theories. And take a dabble into Quantum Physics. That makes Jesus rising from the dead a walk in the park!

OK, in the end it is a matter of faith - but very much NOT blind faith.

The next day, which was a Sabbath, the chief priests and the Pharisees met with Pilate and said, “Sir, we remember that while that liar was still alive he said, ‘I will be raised to life three days later.’ Give orders, then, for his tomb to be carefully guarded until the third day, so that his disciples will not be able to go and steal the body, and then tell the people that he was raised from death. This last lie would be even worse than the first one.”

“Take a guard,” Pilate told them; “go and make the tomb as secure as you can.”

So they left and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and leaving the guard on watch.
These were the guards that ran away sometime on Sunday night and had to be bribed to tell the the lie that the disciples stole the body! But the disciples had fled the scene at the crucifixion and every account shows them as frightened men who grieved that the Jesus thing was all over.

And if the falsehood was so obvious, why did the authorities not produce the body? In fact any mutilated body might have done the trick. Think how easily the resurrection mongers could have been silenced.

But the most powerful evidence comes from reports of people who met the risen (and very alive) Jesus in the days following.
Apologies to long-tern readers : There is no April Fools' Day article this year. On Easter Sunday it just did not seem appropriate.


  1. In my opinion, an excellent decision to side step April Fools shenanigans.