Better, a lot better, as we all know, better than all the other suffering and exploited countries around them.
Miami. – Today in this world filled with turmoil, especially in our region, Cubans remain unaltered in their busy everyday lives making their society better whether they are aware or unaware of that fact. I have just returned from Havana, where the heat and the crushing humidity are everywhere. This reminds us that we are getting closer to the hottest season of the year, accompanied, thanks God by the famous cloudbursts of May. And I say, thanks God, because this year has been prodigal in rains, always welcomed by crops, as well as other trees and plants, especially the flowers, either in the countryside as in the city.
And in the city, in Havana, where I stay the longest, rains drag the dust off streets. A thick layer of dust accumulates in streets after only a week without heavy rains. The dust rarefies the atmosphere and makes heat unbearable. Although already late at night it freshens up the atmosphere and sleeping becomes pleasant.
The morning dawns are clear, although with the passing of hours, around noon, as usual in the entire Island, and the entire tropic, clouds gather, rain threatens, the result of high temperatures is palpable and the steam, and the lucky ones seek and find some shelter in the shades, wherever they can find it, especially if there’s some breeze with it, no matter how faint it is.
In this time of the year cloudbursts at times become storms that you come with blinding lightnings and deafening thunders that scare and wreck havoc, sometimes severe, to the electric devices, especially coolers and refrigerators, if you are careless enough to leave them plugged in to electricity before leaving home. Which brings along the great doubt –just like that of Hamlet¬--, to unplug or not unplug?
Ah!, how those beneficent storms are cursed by hundreds of thousands of compatriots –both young and old--, if that happens while exiting school or your workplace when they soak us through and through and mess with our shoes. Especially if you happen to be very tired, in afternoon hours, complicating a lot more your return home.
Thank goodness for umbrellas and raincoats that lately have been available for purchase in stores, and so many have gotten used to wearing. And thank goodness for some improvement in the public transportation system at least in Havana. The private sector, the almendrones (vintage cars), are still going strong, although due to complaints of those paying for their ride, and the subsequent actions of competent authorities, they have been able to diminish and regulate the avarice of the owners of the same cabs.
The garbage collecting services at homes as well as solid waste collection, like the remains of the trimming of trees and plants, the rubble left by construction sites has lessen enough. At least in Playa municipality where I live. I know that in other areas of that same municipality and other municipalities of the capital it’s not like that. There was a time not so long ago that that situation dragged for years, was unacceptable, dangerous and harmful for everyone, in all areas of all municipalities of the capital. The population's outrage forced the change we have seen.
Procrastination, that is, the lack of care and interest, on behalf of the responsible authorities to improve basic public services and other services and necessary procedures exasperates the population. That makes the population lose patience with them and the trust in the very ones.
But in Cuba authorities step forward, sometimes later than sooner, but they step. Cuban society, as socialist and revolutionary as it is sees the positive changes that are crucial to make of it, despite the griefs, a better society where they can live in peace, healthy, fed, educated, enjoying life, seeing the tangible results of so many decades of sacrifices, in the whole of its society, as well as in themselves, and in their children, daughters, grandsons, granddaughters and the rest of relatives.
One can feel that Cubans -Cuba--, in its vast majority, is still well; now with a new generation of men and women taking control of the State and the Government, certain of the path they chose, freely chosen, and in their dreams. Better, a lot better, as we all know, better than all the other suffering and exploited countries around them East, West, South, as well as… up North.
Cubasi Translation Staff / Amilkal Labañino Valdés