Smugglers Blues: I Found Don Johnson’s Boat While Rollerskiing

FasterSkierSeptember 1, 2004

I was greatly impressed a couple weeks ago when I read that Alaskan Tim Kelly found a ski area on a deserted island on one of his workouts. I’m not trying to top that, but I did “find” the original Miami Vice TV series 800-horsepower boat used by Don Johnson on my last rollerski workout in Norway before I returned to the US.

Let’s first go down memory lane with the first part of the lyrics from one of the main theme songs from Miami Vice. This is for those of you who were old enough to watch the show.

Smugglers Blues by Glenn Frey:

“There's trouble on the streets tonight, I can feel it in my bones
I had a premonition, that he should not go alone
I knew the gun was loaded, but I didn't think he'd kill
Everything exploded and the blood began to spill
So baby, here's your ticket, put the suitcase in your hand
Here's a little money now, do it just the way we planned
You be cool for twenty hours and I'll pay you twenty grand
I'm sorry it went down like this,
And someone had to lose,
It's the nature of the business,
It's the smuggler's blues
Smuggler's blues!” 

I had been tipped off that a guy from the area had bought the Vice boat and that it might be laying at a dock only six kilometers away, so I decided to rollerski along the coast road early the next morning. It was a beautiful morning — warm and no wind.  Sure enough there it was; the boat that was used to catch drug-dealers and other criminals in Miami Vice in the mid-eighties. It was my second “brush with fame” that week since actor Will Smith walked into the elevator I walked out of at a hotel in Denmark a few days earlier. He was there promoting his new movie, I-Robot.  So Will Smith and Don Johnson’s boat in one week…what’s next? 

I noted some rust on the under-water engine parts, but I’m sure that the new owner gets a nice thrill when he “floors it” out of the fjord and into open seas. It’s not a cheap thrill however, with gas prices three times higher than current US prices.

It’s doubtful that the new owner will encounter many drug smugglers, but it’s not unthinkable that he might pass a few hobby-liquor-smugglers returning from a quick trip to Denmark or Germany. 


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