It’s time to tell this story.
Fellow travelers and friends Kate, Pam and I met Tayluma in January 2015 in Trinidad, Cuba.
She returned my wave when we were passing by her house so we stopped and she invited us in. She proceeded to give us an earful.
Cubans can get in trouble for being too friendly with tourists, especially inviting them into their homes, so it was a shock when she unloaded on us.
She was upset and crying, but fighting for her children. ” I don’t care who knows. My children should not have to live like this.”
She showed us everything:
A toilet and a hole in the ground for a bathroom.
Electric bill in arrears
The two girls were sleeping in one bed, feet to feet, with clothes piled up to make the mattress long enough.
Kitchen that was not sanitary.
Storing water to “flush” the toilet.
The children were precious. Well behaved, quiet, and intelligent.
I shed tears as we walked away and vowed to try to help.
The next day we returned with a fellow traveler to translate for us.
I brought a bag of bread and cookies that I was able to sneak out of the hotel breakfast buffet.
We photographed and listen to her story:
Her husband moved them into this house to take care of his dying uncle. When the uncle passed, the husband left town and Tayluma was left alone with her two girls and the house.
The immediate concern was the electric bill and a roof that leaked for about half the length of the house.
The problem was that our tour was leaving the next day.
We left her with money for the electricity and food.
I was able to establish e-mail contact with Tayluma. It was a dial-up connection and not very reliable and she had to walk to the internet business, rent a computer one for one cuc/ hr. and learn how to use it. Finally she emailed me. It was her lifeline.
I got all her information and set her with up an AIS debit card account. We were then able to transfer money to her. At least we could keep the lights on and food in the house.
Part two – We repair the roof. https://wp.me/p4fUlX-W9