First day in Havana and first Mojitos!!!!
Trip Start Sep 20, 2010
42Trip End Nov 23, 2010
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Met Berta my tour guide at Plaza de Armas, a beautiful old restored square filled with trees and book sellers. Headed to the top of one of the expensive hotels on the square just to get a birds eye view and it was so worth it. a lot of restoration had been done on the old town, Habana Vieja, and it was well worth it. After running around a tree three times and throwing a coin over my shoulder, as is the custom, we were ready for the tour.
Berta seemed to know everything about everything and everyone seemed to know Berta. There was a lot of greeting in the streets and the occasional kisses. Great to be popular eh! Saw the Floridita, where Hemingway got his daiquiris, Bodagita where Hemingway drank his moitos, with all that booze in him it is a wonder that he managed to write anything at all!!! We wandered around the 5 squares, 4 of which have been renovated back to former glory and the back streets where you hear jazz and salsa coming out of every open doorway and shuttered windows. It seems that life goes at a different pace in old Habana. So many people buzzing about that the whole embargo doesnīt seem to be having an effect, but then again we donīt have to contend with ration cards and food shortages. Iīm defo going to come back here and just hang out at a streetside cafe and watch the world go bye. So what else was there, museum of chocolate (yes you heard right), I know some people who would have to be evicted from that museum, churches, squares mojitos, perfume factory's (old style ones) I could have spent hours there. Took a taxi around to see the Malecon, Capitolio, Prado, Plaza de Revolution and then to embassy row where she showed me the British embassy (Hmmmm enough said)
Deciding that a drink was now more important that food we settled in on our bar stools for my first one. It was according to Berta the best place for mojitos in all of Habana but I think I was going to be the judge of that. The first didnīt last too long and it would just have been rude to leave so we hand another followed by some political talk, followed by no 3 which lead to some spontaneous salsa dancing. After 3 I decided to stop counting.
On my travels I came across an interesting street name called OīReilly. Seems he was some Spanish dude that helped liberate the city from the British, bet his dad was proud of him.
Back at the house things have not got any better for Jaron and Ryann who canīt draw money from any of their US accounts and after putting money aside for room and tax's they are left with about 3 euro a day to get by. Nothing like a challenge and a daily diet of peanut butter and bread. As it was my last night in Habana I decided to take them out for a last meal as I was heading to Maria La Gorda the following morning to try some scuba diving.
Still having problems with getting calls and text out to home. Able to receive them all right but nothing going out. My missed call count and text count is mounting and I just know that people are starting to worry when they have not heard from me. Well so ends the first full day in Cuba and having a blast so far.