This town has lots of charm. There are restaurants & music wherever you go. We spent one day at the beach a 15 minute taxi ride away and the rest of the time checking out the local bars & clubs. A lot more tourists here than Vinales but not too many.
As the coach pulled into Vinales, a very small, sleepy but scenic town, the heavens opened and about a dozen of us gringós were dropped off in the town square with only an awning for shelter. Before we could even get our bags we were besieged by about 30 women all pleading for us to come and stay at their casa. They would shove little pictures of their place (or the view from within) in your face and jabber on in any number of languages hoping they would hit one you understand. I started talking to a cute little blonde number but Adz & Deb had already started negotiating with a dumpy little mama, nothing to look at (I thought) but at least the foods gotta be good. As the rain was still teeming I suggested Adz go off and look with her as I didn’t want to drag the luggage only to find out it was no good. It so happened that while they were gone Deb started talking to another one which sounded good so when Adz returned and said it was so-so we grabbed the other one and by now the rain had subsided to a downpour […]
We started out on the Wednesday by going to Plaza De Revelucion. This is a huge tower with a giant statue of Jose Marti in front. Marti was an early advocate of Cuban independance in the late 19th Century and despite being killed in an attempted revolt he is best remembered for his poetry. There are busts of him everywhere. Next it was on to the Malecon in a coco taxi. The Malecon is a seaside drive leading into Havana from the West. From here you can lookout slightly to the right into the Atlantic Ocean or left for the 90 miles to Miami. A coco taxi is a little motorbike with a 3 seater bench behind it and the whole thing is encased in an open egg-shaped fibreglass shell. Then we arrived at an Artist market, this place was amazing as there were many stalls selling paintings in a variety of spanish orientated styles, most of which had heavy Picasso influences but with a Cuban twist. The rest of the stalls were taken up with the usual schmonzas (Spanish for bric-a-brac). The Market fronts an area called Habana Vieja (4.5 square km; pop. 105000) which is colloquially defined by […]
When we last left our intrepid travellers they were frantically trying to find their long lost son, Adam. Meanwhile in Mexico City, Adam, having had a restful night care of American Airways was determined not to miss his Mexicana flight to Havana via Cancun, so he arrived at the airport 3 hours early! He then sat himself at the gate and started reading. Everytime people around him got up he checked his watch to see if it was his flight. Finally after finishing a really interesting chapter he realised it was 15 minutes after his plane was schedule to depart and no-one around him moved because he was sitting at the wrong gate!!!…..What is Spanish for schmock! He of course sent an sms to us but by this time we had changed sim cards from our Oz one to the local one. Boarding the later flight he managed to let his Paul know what had happened. Back in Havana we sent Adam an sms with our local number just in case then we found an internet cafe and checked our email to find one from Paul confirming he would be on the later flight. At this stage Deb dissolved into […]
First Deb loses her passport then she loses her eldest son! By the time we got to Cancun we were pretty exhausted, the only thing that kept us going was the knowledge that Adam was on the plane coming from Mexico City to take us to Cuba….that is until we received an SMS from him saying that the American Airways flight he was on from Calgary had been delayed and missed his connection in Mexico City so they were putting him up there for the night and he would arrive in Havana the next day at 3:15 & gave us the flight number. Disappointed we continued to Havana where we were met by Rosa, the lady that runs the Casa where we would be staying. As we had been now travelling for about 30 hours we collapsed into bed 11:00pm local time and didn’t get up til 11:00am next morning. Feeling refreshed we started out to find a bank to change some money. This was a small adventure by itself, but nonetheless once accomplished had some lunch and taxied out to the airport to meet Adam. Well after an hour when I was sure there was no-one left to come […]
Well with less than 15 hours to go before takeoff my darling wife decides to start the adventure early. Around 3:00pm Sunday afternoon (we are due at the airport 8:00am Monday) Deb starts collecting all the little things we need in one place. You know what I mean…tickets – check…money-check….maps-check…itinerary-check…passport-……PASSPORT…. OMG! That’s right folks the little lady has misplaced her passport. Now being used to things like this I decided not to panic straight away and wait patiently while Deb frantically started searching all the usual places. But after about 20 mins of futile searching the poor thing was disintegrating into a mess. OK, I thought, now is a good time to join the hunt. So I tried to calm her down and retrace all her steps since last seeing it. It seems she had taken it with her to Eastgardens thinking she would need it to obtain travellers cheques & foreign currency (she didn’t). So we phoned Travelex, St George, Westfield & the police…no luck. We turned the house upside down for the 3rd time and I started calling QANTAS and Canberra to find out what happens in these cases. I had the none too envious task of telling […]