Friday, April 24, 2015


 by Ray Jason           

When I receive emails from anonymous strangers asking me where I am located, my usual response is, “AVENTURA is 30 miles west of Somewhere.”  This cautious approach is because my essays have undoubtedly earned me a spot on various governmental “person of interest” lists.  After all, one cannot gleefully describe the folks in charge of the modern world as Malignant Overlords, without aggravating them.  But my impact is probably so puny that I am less of a nuisance than a sardine to a supertanker.
            There is only one factor that dominates my personal choice of location.  I always try to keep my little ship close enough to the Panama Canal so that I can sail there in a few days.  That’s because of all of the various Armageddon scenarios a nuclear war is the one that worries me the most.  To survive it, AVENTURA needs to get through that canal and into the Southern Hemisphere.  This concern is not just the ranting of a lunatic screaming, “The sky is falling - the sky is falling - and it’s full of plutonium.”  No, this fear is based on a mounting body of disturbing evidence, which I will now share with you.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015


by Ray Jason          

 It was one of those “University of Life” moments.  I recognized once again that I had learned so little in school and yet so very much by simply listening to the messages that the world provides. 
There were three of them in the cayuco - an elderly woman and a grandson and grand-daughter.  I had just given them some cookies as a little gift, when the woman asked me if I had a wife.  When I said no, she asked me why.  Realizing that bachelorhood is very rare in Latin America, I knew it would be difficult to explain.  So I carefully answered in my best Spanish that I had never married because “I loved my freedom so much.”  There was a profound pause before the woman responded.  Then she fixed me with her eyes and answered me with seven decades worth of sadness, longing and resignation.  She said, “I understand.” 
As they thanked me again for the little gift and paddled away, I was heartbroken by this very personal example of how utterly unjust so much of the human condition is here on our wet, wondrous planet.  That’s because the reason that she understood my passion for Freedom, was because she had rarely experienced any in her entire life.