Rumor has it….
Cuba is a rumor mill, especially when the buzz involves ex-president Fidel Castro Ruiz. One thing we know for sure…. the aging leader is an environmentalist.
Castro – soon after the revolution – began replanting clear cut forest, experimenting with environmental friendly farming and launched a process which resulted in almost a quarter of the island’s lands and aquatic treasures now protected in parks and preserves.
One pristine site is “Jardines de la Reina” – Gardens of the Queen. A string of archipelagos roughly the size of the Florida Keys, the Garden was first discovered and named by Columbus to honor Queen Isabella of Spain.
For more than fifty years this island paradise has been off limits to all but restricted commercial lobster harvesting.
The Ocean Doctor claims, “The Gardes was Cuba’s first preserve.”
Wikipedia says, “It was one of Castro’s favorite underwater fishing spots.”
According to Cuba’s coconut telegraph, it was the bearded socialist’s love of a beautiful woman that led to the preservation of this unique ecosystem.
Seems back in the 1960s, while on a tour of Cuba’s old city Trinidad de Cuba, Fidel fell for the lovely Dalia Soto. At the time, the blond hair, green eyed school teacher was serving as secretary of the Sugar Works Union.
Dalia was a free diver of some note and had been to the garden spearfishing. She suggested her new suitor visit the area and, when the trip was over, a relationship which would eventually lead to marriage had blossomed. In addition, the aquatic wonder that enthralls us today was for the second time in recorded history…. revered in honor of a woman.