Friday, May 08, 2015

The first swallow of Summer

I was only back from holiday when I heard the "Zing" sound that I love.
The first swallow of Summer.
Instantly that sound brings me back to long summer days playing with my friends into the night never thinking of coming inside to go to bed..Happy days.These remarkable tiny birds fly 1/2 way around the world to live among us for one summer, then they go back to Africa and further .
The next season their offspring will come back to Ireland. Without ever being shown a map.


Anyhoo back to Cuba.
It a very poor country. Communist rule, not the place to step out of line.
But they have a really good health system and a great education system.
Wonderful red rich  soil, very fertile.
But I saw plenty of poverty and mentally ill people walking the streets.
The people I met there were happy and well educated.

We went 5 star all the way as it didn't cost much more and we were well looked after.
The National hotel (Click it !) in Havana is where Frank Sinatra and all his Mafia buddies used to rub shoulders with the likes of Winston Churchill.
A fantastic place to stay in.

                                           Lobby of the National Hotel

Every night there was 2 shows and music was played for free out the back.

As I said there was hard poverty there. Plenty of crazy guys walking about blind and handicapped people begging.
One woman of about 50 was in a wheelchair. Her right leg had been amputated below the knee. Her daughter aged around 15 was pushing the chair.
I was waiting for my wife to come back to me.
The woman in the wheelchair pushed something into the hands of a stall holder. The woman just opened the package out, 2 T shirts and a dress.
The bitch of a trader just threw the clothes back into her face and shouted at her to go away.
I was totally shocked, I had not expected such a  reaction, no empathy  with with  the woman's situation. I still cannot understand the woman's mindset.
In Gods honest truth I owe the woman in the wheelchair €10, but I was so stunned I couldn't move.

Still I did one big gesture for Cuba.
Some things are scarce, Sunglasses for example.
We bought 6 pairs from Lidl and the went down a treat as tips.
I also had an old laptop cleaned and we gave it to our waitress.
To her it was as good to her as a new car.

I hope it all works out for her.

No comments:

Post a Comment