U.S. Coast Guard officers rescued a severely dehydrated Cuban refugee from a homemade boat made mostly of Styrofoam yesterday near the Florida Keys. This was his raft.
The unidentified man told authorities he had cast off from Havana on June 20. That means he spent an amazing 23 days floating in the middle of the ocean on a raft made of the same material we ship random tchotchkes and gifts in.
The picture of the white boat shows a few pieces of metal helping to outrig the vessel and a plastic gallon jug. We're hoping he had a lot more than just that one jug when he started.
I know there's been some crazy-ass boats Cubans have tried to use to float their way to freedom, but have any of them beaten this? Seriously — we give a lot of credit to guys who build stuff in their garages and basements, but these guys take ingenuity and fabrication to unheard of levels. We salute you, Cuban refugees, for your innovative do-it-yourself spirit!