Until eternal victory!

Until eternal victory!!

We’ve all seen pictures of the iconic hero of the revolution, Ernesto Ché Guevara, the medical doctor from Bolivia (?) who stood side by side with Fidel.  But you can’t imagine just how big a hero he was–there are many more pictures, posters, art, and huge installations of his image than there are of Fidel, or José Marti, or Cinfuentes, whoever he was.

There are a couple of recent movies about Ché, The Motorcycle Diaries among them, that I will have to see when we get home.  To see this face constantly and know so little is frustrating.

Today we walked, and walked, and walked, around Old Habana.  We went to where Hemingway lived, for a time.  We went to where Hemingway drank.  Tomorrow we see where he got his nail clipped, I think.  Hemingway is a big deal around here–if only because they can sell the touristas a mojito or daquiri at all of these places.

There’s plenty of renovation going on.  To the greatest extent, they manage save the façade of the old buildings while gutting the interior and rebuilding.

People own their own houses or apartments in Cuba, but they are precluded from selling them.  They can be willed, though, so about the only way to get an place of your own is to inherit it. .  This makes a good market for single people who are only children with old/sick parents.

Yes, there really are a ton of old American cars on the streets here.  A close inspection shows plenty of body rust, bondo (body filler), and paint jobs that look like they were applied with a broom on most of them.  There are a few really nice specimens which appear to be commercial enterprises, too.

We went to the old fort overlooking the harbor, which is in the middle of a huge book fair.  Cuba has a literacy rate 97%, for which the nation is justly proud.  Of course, with no internet, limited television and not much money, reading is a pretty common pastime.

Well, I’m glad I figured out how to post a photo.  We’re off to dinner now, more photos and comments to follow.

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