La Habana Pt. II
So I was excited to get back to Havana after 10 days of getting used to the Cuban way of life. My hosts in Cienfuegos booked a hostal in Havana for me along with a taxi collectivo to get me there. This time I got a “regular” car, and old beat up Peugeot 205. The ride was pleasant and contained multiple greatest hits of reggaeton at a very high volume.
I got to the hostal and was shown to my room, which was a shared one with 11 other in bunkbeds. “I am getting to old for this shit” was the first thing that popped into my mind. So leaving my back there I went to find other options.
I found Casa Cassandra, with to individual rooms at a lovely Cuban family. The dad an old boxer, greeted me with rum, an started pulling out barbells. We had to do a workout, after an exercise more rum. I went out to have a look around, and met another traveler we went for a few beers and some food. On my way back to the casa these young Cubans stopped me and wanted me to listen to some Cuban songs. One guy played guitar and sang at a club downtown. They offered me Cuban wine which tasted absolutely horrible, I offered cohiba cigarillos and the guy started playing the solo from Eagles hotel California which turned into a beautiful duet with me an him singing.
I woke up for breakfast and found a hamburger with fries, fruit, coffee and juice – with a bit agitated stomach I went on a free walking trip in old Havana and after that to see the Museo de la revolucion, a fine experience but with strong socialistic messages, and a lot of pictures of El Commandate y Jefe Fidel, Cheguevarra and Raul. I went for a quick lunch and continued to the cerveza fabrica at plaza vieja, there I met two travellers and we had a few. I went back for a nap, and out for some good food for dinner. I found the Lamparilla Tapas Y Cerveza and had a salad and tacos accompanied by an enormous Daiquiri.
I had a good sleep and a nice breakfast this time with fruit and bread, I got some cigars which my host got from a guy who works in the government run tobacco factory who makes Cohiba, Montecristo eg. I bought a box with 25 Cohiba Esplendidos (Fidel’s preferred) for 100 CUC and realised that the ones I got in Viñales was really not a very good deal. Especially when I found out that the esplendidos I bought is 575 CUC if bought from the government.
I went for a stroll along the Malecón and then the weather turned, I visited the Havana Club rum museum for a decent tour and tourist invaded “La bodeguita del medio” where Hemingway used to go get his mojito before going to “Tapas Y Cerveza” for some diner.
When I got back I had a whisky and a cigar with Carmelo my host and had a good chat in Spanish.
Next up is Mexico and hopefully I will be able to post a bit more and add photos – Hola!