Hey everyone. We got off the dock in Key West at 0500 as planned.
Everyone got up to wish us bon voyage. It was absolutely exciting!!!! This was just a step closer to this whole deal being completed. We were all up at 0300, at the dock at 0400, and departed at 0500 right into a squall.
Okey doaky. So this is one thing we need to deal with on this adventure and it was good for us to get into that predicament. Just me, David, Maya, and Tim and we are scurrying around tying things down that we thought we could do later in the trip. But anyway, we putted slowly to let the squall pass and then got to witness a fantastic sunrise and the seas layed down and we all looked around at each other and said, holy crap, we are on our way to Havana!!!
I can’t describe to you what a feeling that was....punch in
Marina Hemingway on your gps and just keep on keeping on. We had loaded
plenty of food, drink, and goodies for the kids in Havana. It took a total of 11 hours but we had stopped many times along the way so David could check currents at different points during the trip. Not to mention being in this beautiful deep blue water and just jumping off Voyager to take a dip. We could not have better conditions to make the voyage.
We celebrated this being Voyager 1's first international journey and did a lot of whooping and hollering. The view of Havana coming in from the water is just spectacular. Last year I flew in so it’s a very different experience boating into Havana in your own boat. I could go on and on about MY experience but that is not what this is about. We pulled into Cuban customs and you would have thought we were rock stars. Everyone knew Voyager 1 and why we were there. Kathy Loreetta from Mexico had come in days before to make arrangements for
us and had spoken to all the principles about the swim. We still had to go through all the regular customs clearance procedures but the different departments that are involved with the clearance were all very nice and it is evident that you are welcomed in Cuba.
Once we got through with customs and immigrations we were received at Marina Hemingway, found our slip and checked into our hotel room right on the canal where Voyager is docked. As luck would have it, the Diana Nyad story had just aired on Cuban television the night before so we were all the buzz as we came into customs and the
marina. Oh but again, it’s not about me. We are in a lovely hotel in the marina, meals etc. all included. Stayed on the campus last night and each of us were beat so had some dinner and hit the sack. Today, we did some business. David had a killer toothache, but he knows a friend that lives in Havana, so he called her, she whisked us through to hospital today in like 20 minutes and 25 dollars later he was fixed. Amazing!
Then a cab down to old town and lunch at the Floradito, an old Hemingway hangout. Daquaris and lobster for lunch, almost for peanuts. Tim did some work today with Commadore Eschrich who also met us as we came in yesterday to arrange for some cars and boats to confirm the best place for Diana to start her swim from. We walked around old town this afternoon and came back to the marina and had another meeting with a local boat captain to lay out some logistics for the next few days. Nice to know i can pay for internet at our hotel. Patty has been nice enought to forward this to our whole mailing list for me, so everything is going very well. This island is incredible, hope to be doing some sightseeing in the next couple of days.