Give me a balcony anytime. Forget the casa on the ground floor. I want to hang out above a busy street, smoke a good cigar, sip some good rum, and watch the world go by. Of course, I always have a camera close by.
Savor the moment
Something will usually happen.
If not, move on.
I was enjoying the artwork on the wall when this man walked by, stopped, and turned around.
I waited for someone interesting to pass by this wall. The color and stripes on this man’s clothing complimented the background.
Kids will always do something interesting.
I liked the blue truck against the blue background and then a woman in blue walked into the scene.
I was trying to document the construction in Havana. This woman shows the difficulty people had just to walk the streets.
It was interesting enough to see a trailer of fans being unloaded, but then I got a wave.
There is this attraction to the “Beatles” in Cuba. I stood across from this poster in Camaguey and simply waited for subjects to pass by.
I loved the colors and patterns framing this old couple in Havana.
Sure enough, this woman stopped right in front of this wall. I could not have placed her better, myself.
One Saturday in Havana I noticed a young girl awkwardly wielding a broom. She saw me with my camera and smiled. Soon another girl appeared, also with a broom, then another, and then a young boy. When the father emerged with a broom, I realized it was cleaning day in his house and …. everyone sweeps.
I was walking and exploring the city of Camaguey, Cuba for the first time when I met my new friend Miguel. I stopped at a cafeteria for a glass of fresh juice. He approached and asked if I would also buy him a juice. The juice was only two pesos (ten cents)… of course I did.
He’s a young guy, under thirty I would guess. I pegged him as a hustler. He pegged me as a yuma. He was right. I was wrong.
We communicated a bit ( I hesitate to say talked because my Spanish still is not up to speed). Miguel claimed to have a day off from work ….. construction.
It was after noon and I was getting hungry.
I asked Miguel to take me to a cheap restaurant. He walked me past a couple of touristy places and I kept saying no. I wanted some real Cuban food. He finally understood and we entered a house with three tables set up in the front room. We both ate congris, salad, and meat for under 6 CUC total.
After lunch Miguel insisted on taking me on a tour of the nearby church where he described every statue of every saint. I was impressed by his knowledge.
After the church tour I wanted to head back to where we first met so I could easily find my way home. Miguel took me another way. He wanted to show me something special.
As we passed an open garage he pointed out an old organ. I quickly followed him inside and as I started to photograph the owner appeared. The old man never spoke. He proceeded to pull the organ from the wall, open the panels, and load a sheet of music. I learned that the organ was from the year 1910. As the old man cranked the handle, the sheet of music followed its course through the inner workings of this relic and music filled the garage. I photographed as quickly as I could, trying to get all the angles covered. I even had time to shoot some video.
I thanked the old man and gave him a few CUCs
Later when I reviewed my images I noticed that the old man’s expression never changed.
La Loma de la Cruz
At the northern end of Holguin, a stairway built in 1950 ascends 465 steps (irregular in width and height) to the top of a hill with panoramic views, a restaurant and a 24-hour bar.
A cross was raised here in 1790 in the hope of relieving a drought. During Romerías de Mayo, devotees climb to the summit on May 3 where a special Mass is held.
Taxis are available to drive sightseers to the top, but I wanted to be able to say that I climbed the steps. The climb is probably best made in the cooler morning hours, but I wanted the evening light. So in 90 degree heat and 90% humidity it took me 25 minutes to reach the top.