Habana, Cuba (Day 2 unifinished, Day 3 thoughts)

7/4/11 3:21 pm


I somehow got dragged away from my journal entry yesterday. I’ll have to come back to that run later.

Right now, I am wondering how I could ever return to my life that I left behind in the Bay Area. I feel myself changing. I feel my mind opening. I never considered myself a close-minded person, but I am just starting to realize how much I did not know. I am glad that I have kept (and will keep) my mind open to new ideas and experiences all these years, but only now do I feel my mind starting to fill with new experiences.

A small part of me hopes that no one expects for me to sit with them and share with them my experiences in Cuba. I anticipate that it would frustrate me if they do not come to love my experiences and the Cubans whom I have met the way that I have. I fear that their prejudices and suspicions about the Cuban way of life will clutter our conversation about my time in Habana.

This must be the culture shock that some friends have told me about upon returning to the United States from another country. Instead of feeling homesick, I am dreading the day that I will have to drop right back into the daily grind and attempt to act the way that one might after returning from an extended beach vacation.

I’ll try to write more about this feeling of change once my thoughts have had a chance to settle and fitting together in a smooth, continuous, connected thought.

Not even that makes sense.

In fact, my thoughts may never click together nicely as I would like. I’m sure that’s all part of visiting a new world for less than 2 weeks – experiences contradict each other; things don’t fit into the paradigms in which I was raised; I am forced to face harsh realities of the world as a whole and my the world of my own.


Last night, I danced the night away in a Havana club. The club was called Palasio de la Rumba. We arrived for a 9:00pm reservation to watch “the most famous Rumba band in all of Cuba”.

What a night it was. I am always captivated by every musician and jazz band we pass in the restaurants, bars, and street corners, so it is difficult for me to appreciate as necessarily the best in all of Cuba. The band dancers were hypnotic. The male dancers were particularly flashy with their combination of smooth and jerky dance moves – all moves I have never seen before. My ears soaked in the Cuban jazz, but my eyes new to Rumba analyzed every dip and sway of the dancers. I love to dance, but I have never danced to Rumba music before. Regardless, I could not wait to hit the dance floor. I could tell that the men were good dancers here and were here for just that – to dance. I felt safe with my group and in this fancy pantsy club.

It was on.

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