Monday, March 21, 2016
About the same time I remember going to the Bergen County Democratic headquarters in Maywood to see Governor Richard J. Hughes with my parents. Everyone there was staring at the tv. Kennedy was speaking, and the news wasn't good. That night we all went home with the knowledge that the Russians had missiles in Cuba. For a week or two people were planning fallout shelters.
Little by little Cuba got off the front pages, until there was the occasional hi-jacking. We all got used to Cuba as it was, and the politicians knew not to change the status quo if they wanted to hold onto Florida. Of course there were a few hiccoughs along the way. There was the Mariel boat lift, the little boy who went ashore in Florida but was returned back to Cuba. I always said that Reno sending that boy back to Castro cost Al Gore the election.
Now we are entering a new era of relations with Cuba. The Democrats are willing to lose Florida this time around because it looks like the Republicans are going to lose big enough that one state won't matter. People are already talking about traveling to Cuba. I suspect that once most of us get there it will be ruined, and about as exotic as Hoboken. Still it would be something to talk about at parties. I'm holding out til they re-institute the ferry.
Editor's note: I was seriously thinking of bringing back Dear Aunt Agnes to talk about Cuba. The punchline would have been "and don't talk to me about Trump. He'll probably want to open a casino there."