I want to rent a car today to go to Pinares de Mayari which
is a beautiful national park in the mountains that includes hiking trails and
waterfalls. I have reserved a jeep but when I arrive at 7:00 excited at the
prospect of seeing more of Cuba, I am told my car has been rented to someone
else that is coming from the airport and there is no other car available.
I am very disappointed but now I can return to the beach,
jog and stretch, and have a leisurely breakfast and maybe catch up with my
I am at one of the bars on the main floor which I like a lot
because I get to stand up and write, which is so much better than sitting for
hours writing. And it is at the far end of the bar so I am not amongst all the
smokers and there is a nice breeze flowing through the courtyard.
The only plug in the room is here. I will write here from
now on. One of the bar tenders wants a computer for his son who is at the
university. I immediately wonder if he’ll trade for a car rental for four days.
Probably if he can afford a car rental he could buy a computer, but maybe not.
I will ask my friend Manuel (pronoun ‘man well’) whom I have
bought paintings from. He is 45, has lived in England for 9 years, was a
university professor at the Holguin university but quit to make more money
selling his ‘brother’s’ paintings to tourists at the small market next to my
He has two teenaged children by two different womyn, has
been married four times, and declares this is his last marriage although not
necessarily his last child. His fourth wife, who looks much younger than him,
has a 10 year old boy but wants another child, plus he’s supporting his sister
whose eyesight is failing, and his mother – or at least helping to support, as
his sister lives with his mother.
I am trying to trade my books with him for three more
fabulous pictures but he is not trading yet. I overheard him tell someone he
really needs a book to read so I thought he’d jump at the chance to read the
two new books I bought at the Toronto airport. He said he cannot afford to
trade – he only gets 10% of the sales – but he wants children’s toys instead,
which I don’t have – I never got the soccer balls together…. Oh well.