So, I began having this heated discussion with my father about what exactly constitutes geographically the famous Saguecera.
For those lucky ignorant souls who do not know La Saguesera, it is the name given to the area South of Flagler (including Flagler) and West of, more or less, La Le Jeune, and ending in about Miller, because after that it becomes Kendall, and that is another story. At least that is my take. My father went on insisting that la Saguesera is simply the South West of Miami. I even went online to research the meaning and actually it is defined by the urban dictionary as:
1. saguesera Cuban slang for an area in Miami going from Little Havana all down the famous Calle Ocho(8th street)and into the southwest area of Miami Dade county. Populated mainly by Cubans as well as other Hispanic groups. e.g. I used to live in La Saguesera when I was a kid.
So even though, La Saguesera is really a geographic terminology—it derives from South West--Southwestcera—Saguecera—it means a lot more than that. Homestead, for example, is in the South West of Miami and I think anyone who knows Miami can agree that Homestead is not part of La Saguesera.
You know when you find yourself in La Saguecera. It definitely starts on Flagler. Get off on the Palmetto exit and drive through its traffic-over-saturated streets: where traffic signs have no meaning, and you can buy flowers and churros and mamoncillos at the light.
Turn on 107th and then really get to know traffic. Try to make it up to Calle Ocho and see how long it takes you or how many Cuban Cafeterias or strip mall you can count. Pass by Bird Road's Reys Pizza and have a traditional Banana-onion Pizza (this is actually excellent) and drive out of there aggressively or not drive at all.
I was surprised when I found Time Magazine referring to La Saguesera as the area of Little Havana only. The truth is that Little Havana is not even that much to the West, which is why I had never even considered it part of La Saguesera. Little Havana is one thing: smaller, there aren’t a million strip malls and it is pretty and cultural. La Saguesera is the chaos, where people get lost, where you don’t want to drive to. My friend Jeremy says Flagler puts a limit to where he can have friends. Once they cross the line to the West, they are lost in La Saguesera forever.
*Map provided by Webmistress Barbie