Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Varadero, Cuba

Varadero is the closest port from Key West and I sailed there in 1978, as Cuba was opened by Carter, bless his heart!

Vilma D. L√≥pez: WoW... nice to know, Ron Alexander. I bet you enjoyed that trip. I want to go !!! smile emoticon ♡

Ron Alexander: Mixed, I was asked by a business man to help him start a Charter service between Key West and Varodero (90 miles each way). For a sailing vessel, this required an overnight cruise to leave while still daylight and reach there in light. Unfortunately, the :"businessman": was afraid and got drunk, so when the very attractive Cuba business "attache" came aboard, he flirted with her, and she left in a huff. Then a big burly Costa Garda Capt. walked up and told us to leave immediately. I asked him if we could wait until the squall was over, but no - LEAVE NOW! I started the diesel and put up the sail, as he followed very close in his steel vessel with big gun on foredeck pointed at us. He must have flollowed us that scary way for a couple of hours until we were in International waters. If the sails had blown out or the engine died, he would have probably rammed my wooden boat and sunk us, and not really cared. Also, I wasd dismayed at very distraught looking Cuban wandering out on the jetty as we sailed in, and little boys in military outfits marching on other side of channel. Things have changed and would like to go back without my own boat or :businessman"- chartering one there on a Canadian sailboat that is already there. Ahoy Mate!

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