Thursday, February 11, 2010

A Brief Bit About Cuba


I'm still shaking the travel dust off so please don't expect much from this post.

Cuba was interesting, if appalling. I'll write more about why in the coming days, but for now suffice it to say that there is very little in what could be a land of plenty.

The people are demonstrative, loving, and expressive. Music is everywhere.

Food is rationed and it is common for stores and travel stops to be out of the thing you want.

Rum, however, is everywhere. So are cigars.

This will have to do for now. The last thing I'll say right now is the photo in the header is an agave or century plant in bloom that we saw at a lookout. It takes a long time for it to bloom and then it dies, thus it's a once in a lifetime event.


David Cranmer said...

An Agave sounds amazing.

Rum and cigars huh? It's amazing how even the poorest of the poor are never without the required vices.

Leah J. Utas said...

Both products are dirt cheap although the wages earned by the average Cuban are pitiful, David. Both are integral to the Cuban way as near as I could figure it.

messymimi said...

There is nothing like travel to remind you to be thankful for what you have back home.

I'm glad you are back safely, and can't wait to read more in the coming days.

Having music everywhere -- I love that idea.

Leah J. Utas said...

You are so right, Messymimi. And thanks.

Music everywhere is good in theory.

the Bag Lady said...

Am I reading too much into the "once in a lifetime" line?

I, too, am glad you are home safely, and look forward to hearing more about your trip!

Leah J. Utas said...

Well, dfBag Lady, Cuba's gone to the bottom of my visit list. I'm in no hurry to see it again so maybe the trip will be a once in a lifetime event.

Clare2e said...

Delighted you're home safe and sound, and I look forward to your reports as they happen.

Leah J. Utas said...

Thanks so kindly, Clare. Please stay tuned.

Barbara Martin said...

Glad to hear you're back safely from your trip.

A friend goes every couple of years to Cuba to visit some people she met, and she takes a 'care package' with her each flight. One item of necessity is Wrigley's gum.

Hilary said...

Welcome back, Leah. Sorry to hear that it wasn't what you hoped. My son is heading there with friends in about a week. Anything he should know?

Thomma Lyn said...

The agave is amazing! I'm looking forward to hearing more about your trip. The Cubans do sound like lovely people. Erkle on rum and cigars being everywhere, but food being rationed. :P

Leah J. Utas said...

Thanks, Barbara. We took assorted things with us to use as tips.

Hilary, if your son is going to a resort I'm sure he'll be fine. If he's out seeing the country he should bring his own toilet paper, avoid certain kinds of fish like grouper due to possible poisoning (can't think of the reason right now but it has something to do with the still waters of the gulf I think), bring his own spices, ignore everyone who begs for money, and to not under any circumstances change money on the street, and make sure all the money he gets are the convertible pesos. They say "convertible" right on them.

Thomma Lyn, I think they are. As to the rationing, it was so foreign to my experience that it was hard to fathom.

Hilary said...

Thank you, Leah. I'll forward that info along to him. I appreciate it. :)