World: Escape from Bedlam and Boredom

"iBotes al agua!" (Boats to the water!) Thus prompted by a Spanish-speaking skipper, TIME Correspondent Richard Woodbury boarded a chartered 40-footer at Key West for a voyage to the Cuban industrial port of Mariel. Woodbury expected to complete the 220-mile round trip in 24 hours but instead spent nearly a week in Cuba—including five days under virtual house arrest in a Havana hotel. Woodbury's account of his mission to Mariel:

There was a mood of euphoria mixed with anxiety on the Endeavor as it slipped out of Little Torch Key. Aboard were two Cuban Americans from Miami who had paid the boat's...

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