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CUBA 2.jpg

24" X 36 " Hardwood Frame, fine art giclée print with museum quality matte & acrylic: ready to hang.
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No political agenda here... Cuba, less than 100 miles off the coast of Florida, is a destination country beyond compare. I was fortunate to sail twice to this island nation visiting ports including Havana, Santiago de Cuba (the birthplace of Fidel Castro) and Cienfuegos. On the outside the country has preserved its assets well. The relevant buildings, main thoroughfares, and monuments are in nearly pristine condition. The architecture is iconic. A lot of Havana's architecture is in fact in the baroque style, or at least a version of it. Baroque had its origins in Italy in the 1600s, but did not make it to Havana until almost a century later. More delicate in nature than the earlier Moorish-inspired Spanish colonial architecture, the baroque Havana architecture was more muscular in nature than many baroque buildings back in Europe. This is an interesting example of how Cuba and the New World were seen as a European outpost, needing the style of Europe as opposed to creating its own distinctive style.


Walking beyond the boundaries and the scars of the past and its aging infrastructure approach frightful - some could be compared to a war zone (in my opinion.) My first visit in 2017 on Fathom Cruise Lines (one of the first to venture into Cuba under the new tourism laws) did not require the prerequisite escorted tours of my second voyage with Holland America Line (as regulations tightened.) I was on my own to hire a driver and explore Santiago de Cuba in a 25-year-old beat up Russian something with a driver who was fluent in English and well prepared to show me the sights, and more. This 6-hour journey was perhaps one of the most memorable experiences I have ever had as a solo traveler. After the routine stops, we ventured out and about as locals do including a wonderful al fresco lunch at a once grand hotel. Reminiscent of its past glory, the starched-shirt wait staff delivered a world-class meal and experience. Fresh food minus any preservatives (a simple brochette of chicken and rice) was simple and delectable. Interacting with the people of Cuba was easy but rehearsed by the natives. I suppose you either fight for what you want or join life as it is.



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