20 Jun 2020
I love this photo because of the setting and the man's gentle, solicitous body language. He's actually the grandfather of the little boy, Evri-Daniel. I took this shot several years ago and, since then, have had many enjoyable visits with this busy little family. They live just outside of the Marea del Portillo village and are lovely, kind and quite religious people.
Evri-Daniel now has two younger sisters, as well as an older one, but the father, Arisbel, has assured me there won't be any more! Their two-room hut is rather crowded already, although Arisbel plans to add on. I'm very much looking forward to seeing this family again – especially the newest addition, Betsy Ruth, who was born in early April.
If my April group trip had not been cancelled due to the pandemic, I would have been there soon after the birth, loaded with baby clothes and other gifts. I hope I'm able to visit before she grows too much!
2 Jun 2020
I have generally tried to limit my posts here to Cuba or other travel-related topics. However, what has been happening in the U.S., particularly the murder of George Floyd, have been weighing heavily on my mind and heart. So, I am posting a letter that I wrote a few days ago and shared on various forms of social media. What goes on there affects us all, including those interested in travel to/from the States or anywhere else.
May 28, 2020
When you elected Obama, we cheered. You gave us hope. We began to believe that, yes, we could do anything, if we worked together. The planet could be a kinder, gentler place, with renewed concern for the environment. Real respect for others could become a new normal. World peace seemed possible.
You stood tall. You walked with confidence, and you seemed to know the right direction to go. We began to fall in love with you all over again, the way we had in your glory days, when you were truly a world leader, a pillar of strength and a beacon of light in dark times.
Then, you turned on your heel and installed that other man in your seat of highest power. We were shocked. In that moment, you dashed our hopes and ripped off the veils. You were not what we thought you were. You were not what we wanted you to be. You could no longer be our darling or a beloved, trusted friend. As the days slid by in this new age, we saw more and more clearly that you were in trouble, and so were we.
In the end, we really are all in this together. Your failures affect those around you. When you take a knee in violence, destruction, depravity and disrespect to humanity, we all feel it on our throats. Your demons will dance on our graves too.
Please stop, America. Stop going down this reprehensible path. Stop the random killing. Stop hurting people. Stop trying to deceive everyone, including yourself. Stop lying and pretending everything’s okay. It’s not. You’re not okay and it’s hard to watch you self destruct. Some of us can’t view the news anymore; others can’t stop, as if seeing a slow-motion train wreck happening before our eyes. The moment of impact is coming. We can only hope you won’t take too many of us down with you.
It’s not too late to mitigate what’s going on, America, but it’s up to you. You can be bright and beautiful again. Please try.
With concern, on behalf of the international community,
Jenny from Canada