How amazing to be in Cuba hearing the music I love so much from the throats of nationals!
Our group passed a plate to collect tips for them.
“Are we going to have to give dollars to every Cuban who smiles at us?” one of the people in our group grumbled.
Armando’s jaw tightened nearly imperceptibly before he answered. “That’s up to you.”
Again, I tried to read his face. If there had been any expression to accompany the tightening of his jaw, it was gone now. Like staring at a blank wall. How does he do that? And do it every day, every week, every time he leads Cuba-ignorant Americans like us thru his country?
Do our questions offend him? Anger him? Amuse him?
What does he say to other Cubans about us?
Wow, it’s 3:30am. Karli & Dana are konked out in their bunks. Glad they were booze-and-sleep-drunk when they came in from the bar so I could keep writing. After teetering on the toilet to blow out more of the recycled Gulf we drank at the mercado today, they fell on their faces in their flat pillows.
Back home, it’s so quiet outside at this hour…
A dog’s barking…a car’s chugging…people are calling out Spanish things to each other.
I could fill you right up tonite, dear diary, with pages and pages more about this forbidden place I’ve been in for just over 24 hrs. But I’m drifting, my eyelids are fluttering…
And, thankfully, my insides have stopped percolating.
I guess I’ve expunged my inner Gulf.
I would love to wander outside, find one of those scary haunted house/graveyard-looking trees I saw in Habana today – did I tell about those?
They’re called ceibas. We were told these trees are sacred, and that the branches are really roots. The crown grows witchy hair that hangs down low from within the green leaves, sweeping the sidewalk in a breeze. The twisted, gnarly trunks form weeping willow caves.
You can hunch down, slip thru the slits, and crawl around inside the trunk. You could be in there, peering out at passersby who would never suspect they are being watched. By a tree. With eyes.
I’d love to slip inside the trunk of one of these trees right outside Fidel Castro’s office, to see what his Revolution is really about these days…
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“Diary of An American Girl’s Journeys to the Forbidden Land.”