La Habana. Havanna. Havana. La Havana. L'avana. Hawana.
After a few days of reflection, I still don't have the words to describe Havana or my experience there just yet. In sharing photos with friends afterwards, the closest I have come to is saying that it feels like you are stuck in a film set depicting the 1950s-1960s — it's fascinating. The streets are busy, with people sitting outside their doorsteps. The parks are filled with people looking down at their devices, trying to connect to WiFi for an hour, a full display of the oppression Cubans face in accessing the world's information. And the roads, well, you know: they're filled with classic cars that don't have seatbelts.
And as such, Havana is a charming, intriguing and weird place, truly unlike any other place I have been. I'll be sharing more over the next weeks, once I can better and more thoughtfully articulate the moments we experienced, the things we saw and the week we had there. Perhaps the best way to describe Cuba is this, though:: "That’s how it is in Cuba today, a stunning tropical island that constantly presents American visitors with contrasts, contradictions and plenty of mystery."
As President Obama said in 2014 about Cuba, "We cannot keep doing the same thing and expect a different result." Thanks, Obama, for taking steps to achieve progress in U.S.-Cuba relations and life for the Cuban people.