Well, this is also Cuba. After I had bought my Viazul bus tickets, I sat down in the waiting hall. And the elderly lady that sat next to me just started a conversation with me out of the blue. ‘’Que tal, mi amor?’’- How are you,love? My heart was melting. She was absolutely lovely and we just chatted for a bit. Then, an old man passed by and sold some peanut-honey-bars, for $6MN (again, $25MN is $1CUC, and 1 Euro is $1,24CUC). I felt really nice. I assume, that the older generation is friendlier than young people. The older generation still remembers what Cuba was like prior to the revolution and they appreciate the things which they have now, whereas young people now only see what they don’t have: Internet, fancy smartphones, computers, Western clothes,…
While I was waiting in line to enter the bus, I met another German backpacker. This was already his sixteenth visit to Cuba (!) and he talked a lot about the Cuban way of working. It had taken both of us a while to buy our tickets before, as the office lady worked very slowly, kept chatting with a friend of hers, etc. Well, in Cuba the office pace is way different from what we know in Europe. Was this the effect of communism? Working as if it was a permanent holiday? He also told me, that last year, Raul Castro allowed Cubans to buy imported clothes. This triggered a huge chaos, as somehow the country was flooded with clothes from abroad and there were window-shops selling them everywhere. As the situation escalated, Castro reversed the policy again and instead, a new Cuban textile factory was built. Was this a sign that Cuba is not ready for a transition? …
After my short bus trip through the beautiful landscape, I finally arrived in Trinidad. My casa in Cienfuegos already arranged my next casa in Trinidad, and a friendly looking woman was already waiting for me with a paper sign with my name on it.
We walked for about 2 minutes and arrived at the house. It was located in a busy market street. My room was in the second floor, next to the big terrace. The room turned out to be a little apartment actually. I had my own floor (including the terrace), a big bedroom with a double bed and a single bed, including a TV (!!), and a nice bathroom. What a difference!! In my room in Cienfuegos, the toilet didn’t work properly, it was really dirty and the mattress was a nightmare. My host was extremely nice. She brought me coffee and gave me brochures and advice on what to do in Trinidad. And, the family also had a dog! I was very happy.
Also, she told me that I could have dinner at the casa for $7CUC, and for me there would be fish (I don’t eat meat, I only eat fish when it is local which of course, is the case in Cuba). I couldn’t be happier.
After a quick shower, I decided to explore the city. My casa was located less than 1 minute from the Plaza Mayor. And it was just simply lovely. Stone streets, cute little houses, many small churches and towers,… it was great. I spent the day having a look at Trinidad from the top of a tower, and of course I had some nice beers in a bar on the stairs next to the Plaza Mayor.
And my evening ended with a wonderful dinner. I absolutely loved it! My casa was fantastic. Backpacking in Cuba wasn’t too bad after all….?