curious-me's Diaryland Diary


Cuba 2023

As I wrote on FB, Cuba is now but a dream....back to reality. What can I say about this trip? I have so many thoughts and emotions about it. I was nervous to fly and yes on the take off I squeezed Keith's hand so hard I'm sure he's still feeling it but coming back? I squeezed a little but was really ok. I got out of my head. Also? Gravol really does make me sleepy!

But to start at the beginning, we packed the night before and weighed our bags - both under. We added and removed stuff up until the last minute. We thought we had a ton of time Thursday morning but 8:30 came too fast and before we knew it we were locking up and running outside to get in the shuttle. En route Keith realized he forgot his prescription sunglasses he had specifically ordered for this trip. I think I was more devastated than him! Luckily everyone seemed to have brung extra sunglasses because he was able to borrow a pair for the week (the airport did not sell any and Cuba also sold none - weird!). We were 2 hours early but the wait didn't seem too bad. We flew out of the airport in our town for the first time and it was AMAZING! I never want to fly out of Toronto again!

The week didn't seem to go too fast or too slow. It had its ups and downs in terms of being on the same page as our "Cruise" neighbours as I think I will nickname them. Every chance they got they were "selling" all of us on cruising and how amazing it is. It got old. I had called it that they wouldn't enjoy Cuba and they really didn't. Everything was lacking for them. But for me? It was great. We had a beautiful room over looking the private pool. We were close to the beach. And the weather was beautiful the whole time. On our last day it was overcast which was perfect because leaving in sunshine makes it harder. We had a wonderful jeep outing with our "mellow" neighbours. On the plane down the Cruisers bought a catamaran excursion and didn't discuss it with any of us. Mkay. I waited until the meeting with our rep the next day who described each excursion and decided the jeep one sounded more appealing for us: snorkeling in the ocean, swimming in a cave of fresh water, going to a farm and then lunch on said farm (with a short horse ride if you were so inclined) ending with a ride in a speed boat that you drove yourself! It was a full day! Luckily the Mellows wanted to do the jeep as well so the 4 of us booked together. Cruiser lady did not like that! She has fomo. We had a few close calls while driving - the Mellows liked driving stick and fought over it. K and I were happy to sit back and be driven around. Mrs Mellow pulled out in front of a speeding truck at one point - that was a tad scary. And may have crossed the line while looking at something and I had to redirect her attention so a big truck wouldn't hit us head on. But overall it was great fun. We had a ton of laughs.

I got a new nickname from Mr Mellow "Ducky". Some tourist at our resort must have been leaving tiny ducks all over the place - I found 4 - technically 5 although I am accused of stealing the 5th. As you all may know I love my rubber ducks so I was tickled every time I found one. K and I decided for Mrs Mellows b-day in April we are going to order said ducks off Amazon and fill a tiny jar with them as a joke. I truly believe she will love it.

As for my other thoughts they mostly circle around the poverty that is just so prevalent in Cuba. I can't help but feel awkward and out of place especially when we left the resort. We would take the 'tourist' bus into Veradero and then you see the bus the workers have to take and it's just so extreme. I can't help but feel that they must resent the tourists on some level. Yes, they have jobs because we are there but also so many of us are so wasteful. I never wanted to take food that I wouldn't eat or be wasteful with anything. We had heard horror stories about lack of toilet paper and towels but thankfully we had no such problems, even though we prepared for both! I pretty much left everything there in terms of toiletries because as we were told everything and anything was appreciated. Keith even left some shirts and a Canada towel we brought.

Would we do it again? For the most part yes. We would go away with our neighbours again but we also know the Cruisers will be pushing for a cruise. I'm not against cruising and if they find a good price and it works out then yes I would try it especially going with someone who knows the ropes. The Mellows may not tho. Mr Mellow wasn't too happy with the 'sales push' the whole trip.

What I really will miss? Walking up to a bar night or day and ordering a coffee! Cafe latte, cappuccino, or whatever coffee drink they wanted to make me! Bliss!!

I am happy to be home. Not so happy to be losing an hour sleep tonight. But tonight's sleep was going to be crap anyway. Back to work. Back to reality.

9:18 p.m. - 2023-03-12


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