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Sunday, September 12, 2010

Marco Island, Friday September 3, 2010

It's Friday around five in the afternoon or so and I find myself at the Dolphin Tiki Bar sipping on a cold draft beer after gulping down the first one. It's Labor Day weekend and S/V Blondie-Dog is squared away and securely tied up at the Rose Marco River Marina.

All service department personnel at the Rose Marina have departed for the long weekend and it won't be until Tuesday at the earliest that anyone will be able to reassemble the starting mechanism that I had securely stored in a tupperware dish. But that's okay. There's a festive happy hour going on here overlooking an adjacent boat marina to the Rose with many rich, idle, successful, beautiful people milling about.

No sooner had I arrived after trekking around the condo complex and after having worked up a good sweat when I found myself chatting it up with a young attractive couple from Wisconsin who happened to be vacationing at their rich uncle's condo.

I was describing my mini ordeal of having bobbed about out at sea the previous night and of the starter cord on my outboard snapping in two pieces and of thinking better of continuing on to the Keys without "auxiliary power" and of being glad to be back ashore sipping on a cold beer.

When asked where I was headed to after Marathon, I responded Havana. Not because I'm certain to be headed that way by any means but because it seems to capture the full attention of my captive audience and because I happen to be in a bar where at least some bullsh*t is sure to be expected .

I could have said Key West or even the Bahamas for that matter but the foreboding, and prohibited city of Havana is sure to get every one's attention and I happened to be in a bar and it's my prerogative to bullsh*t all I want to while in a bar... never mind whether or not competing at least once in my life in the prestigious annual Jose Raul Capablanca chess tournament held each November in Havana is on my bucket list of things to do.

A moment later a fellow bar patron was soon heard to be interjecting that he had previously sailed to Havana some fifteen years ago upon overhearing me mention Havana. The grey balding portly gentleman had been sipping on a drink tinkling over ice in a short glass when he made his comment.

There seemed to be gold jewelry dangling all over his somewhat bare chest and around both of his wrists. He proceeded to ask whether I was taking anybody with me and when I responded that I was sailing by myself, he said "Good!!, don't take anybody with you!" and then described having some fifteen or so scantily clad young woman frolicking about the deck of his motor yacht vessel at all hours while in the port of Havana.

Somehow I was supposed to be impressed by all this but I instead found his commentary to be rather tasteless... even for a bar. All I could think about was that those young twenty-something year old girls all had mom's and dad's and even older brothers somewhere toiling about trying to make financial ends meet in Havana somewhere and that I'd be damned if I was going to incur any body's wrath and resentment.

I can assure the local populous, that if I do indeed visit your country, that I will be courteous and even more importantly, respectful.

However , if I were to meet a "dama" somewhat my age, who happened to be "soltera, atractiva, culturalmente educada, amable, y con intereses mutuos", then all is fair game.

You might even find me up early one morning somewhere in Havana, applying for dual citizenship.

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