In Havana, you will find that a taxi driver lives in the same building as a doctor. Perhaps someone who works law enforcement lives next door to a grounds keeper? A scientist lives in the same building as a teacher – and so on.
Cuba has around 37,800 miles of roads. Of that number, close to 20,000 miles are unpaved. That said, some downtown streets may have been paved 40 years ago and not touched since. So, what maybe a paved route, could easily feel and look unpaved.
Viñales Valley was designated as a World Heritage Site in 1999 and is protected by the Cuban Government as a National Park. Due to the area being a World Heritage Site, it is also protected by the United Nations with an international treaty.
The late Fidel Castro banned imports of vehicles in 1959. Cuba doesn't have an auto manufacturer, so the cars that were imported in the 50's were there to stay. The communist leader also banned the import of car parts, according to the "Independent UK Newspaper."
The sun falling on downtown Havana showed the true Cuban dream of success had washed away into the Caribbean years ago. An area that was alive with music, families and more in the 1940's and 50's is decaying as if it was struck by a curse in 2000's.
Cuba at 9:30 PM Eastern Time: The capital of Havana is only a whisper outside on a Thursday night, other than a few passing cars. As you walk into one of the many apartment buildings you hear kids playing in one unit and as you continue down the florescent lit hallway, you hear the sound of a small yelping dog.
Hours passed as he sat on the curb of a Cuban hotel in downtown Havana strumming his ukulele. As the hours went by he would get up and pour some of his water bottle on the plants directly behind him, one by one.
If one were to read the basic statistics of Cuba, one might be led to believe it is a peaceful place to live filled with freedoms. For example, the unemployment rate is a low 1.7%. Residents have the joy of seeing beautiful tropical views daily and the cars… Most are 1950’s daily drivers that are fun to look at and fun to own.
JANUARY 2018: The dark night made the neon lights appear brighter as the prostitutes, the alcoholics and tourists slowly mixed with one another like a Sunday crowd mixing in church never staring too long.