Tales of the Itinerant Sailor

Cruising 2009

Political Peril and the Itinerant Sailor

By

Steven Jones  

The Promise Requited

I now had to leave the Sirius II  on the hook in  Bahia Luperon on the north coast of the Dominican Republic, a noted safe hurricane hole.  But for peace of mind I retained Gregory of Banegras to check on the boat from time to time, and Luis, a local Dominican, to clean the barnacles from the bottom once a month.  In shallow bays, in tropical waters, marine life grows fast.

From there, I flew out of Santo Domingo to Vancouver Island, Canada to help celebrate the birthdays of, first, daughter Renate, and later that week, son-in-law Gary.  Next, Renate drove me to Duvall, east of Seattle, in time to celebrate the birthday of son Russ.  Before that, however, we take  time to watch a performance in Seattle of the Los Angeles based Leonix Movement Theatre which features the dancing and acting of nephew Ryan Jones.

Sand Castle with Larry and Julie

With Larry and Julie at Sand Castle #1

Later, with brother Larry and his wife Julie (Ryanís parents),  I am able to return briefly to Vancouver Island to visit daughter Renate and family, and just in time to view the Sand Castle formations, before flying back to Key West, Florida to check on the houseboat.  All is well.  But this is the peak of the hurricane season so I stay on for nearly two months to make sure.  Then, in late October I return to the Dominican Republic.  After a quick check on the Sirius II, I fly to Santiago de Cuba.

Many countries are reluctant to issue a one-way ticket for tourists into their country.  After you spend your money, they want you out of the country.  I have gotten around this before by showing documentation that I have transportation all ready arranged out of their countryómy boat.  But with Cuba and/or Cubano Airlines, there is no exception.  They want the price of a round trip ticket.  And thatís the way it is.  Even though I am not paying for the ticket, it still galls me that policies like this are so arbitrary.

I arrive in Santiago one day ahead of schedule.  I use this day to travel to the Cuban city of Guantanamo, just to get a feel for what the Cubans must think about the Americans who have this Navy base there, by proper treaty of course, with a former government, but not welcomed by the present government.  I donít really learn much from this trip, as I am reluctant to ask the kinds of questions that might put me in hot water, again, with government authorities.

Cuban Autos

In Cuba, they are still running.  The Chevy is my taxi.

The Third Mate The Other False Start

Cruising 2009: Political Peril and the Itinerant Sailor
Copyright © 2010 Steven Jones. All Rights Reserved.

Contact: siriusii@hotmail.com