Cid and Manny leaned against the rail on the crammed upper deck of the venerable boat, watching the retreating Cuban coastline. Vessels of all sizes motored out of the harbor, seeking the open sea. The noise was deafening. Passengers screamed and boat captains blew their horns. On deck a group of men drank rum from a bottle and chanted, “Libertad, libertad, libertad . . . ”
“Many weird-looking people on this boat,” Manny commented. “That man over there looks like a drug lord.” “Castro emptied out the jails and let out all the scum along with the political prisoners -- murderers, druggies, thieves, prostitutes. The cream of society.”
“Hear, hear. But we’re out of there and on our way to America. A new life, Brother.” Manny flashed a big smile to someone behind Cid’s back and added a wolf whistle. “Think you can be without my charming company a while? A cute girl just gave me the eye. You want to join me and make new friends?”
Cid shook his head.
“You’re still down about Sandra not coming to say good-bye to you?”
Cid nodded. “It’s been a bad week all around.”
“Things will improve now, Brother. Cheer up. You’re depressing me.” He punched Cid on the arm playfully. “In a month you might not even remember Sandra. There are tons of beautiful women in the United States. I’m going to try to get a head start, maybe find me a new girlfriend right here on this boat. Sure you don’t want to come?”
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About the Author:
A member of MENSA, Pereda is the regional director of the Florida Writers Association and the co-founder of AWE (Asheville Writing Enthusiasts). He loves sports and has won many prizes competing in track and show-jumping equestrian events.
Pereda lives with his family in Asheville, North Carolina.
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ISBN: However Long the Night 978-1-61572-598-4 E-Book 978-1-61572-599-1 Print Book