Some of my family is located in Mantilla, an out-of-the-way suburb of Havana, and the other part in the city of Santiago de Cuba, and of course, in Chicago, U.S.A.  I enjoyed two weeks in Mantilla in March for my birthday. United States President Obama flew to Havana the same day that I did, we were even at the José Martí airport at the same time although I didn’t see him. My family members waiting outside for me did see his entourage and cars. Although I didn’t get to see Obama or the Rolling Stones, (Noel dubbed the events “too dangerous” despite my protests,) I did get to watch the political discourses on TV. One day during the second week Noel and I went to the Cementario Colón to visit my great grandfather, Sinforiano Villa y Monte (Sinfito’s), tomb and leave flowers. During the week we hung out at home, watched Elpidio Valdes and Vampiros en La Habana, Noel played guitar, I watch the neighbors play soccer, we hung out at the Malecón, we went to Old Havana as a day trip, and spent lots of time discussing the political developments in hushed tones.

At Sinforiano’s tomb
My family
The guitar
Old Havana
Obama’s Speech: Live
In front of our house