Day 77 – Santa Clara

I woke up feeling a bit better thankfully and was ready to hit the road and leave Trinidad behind. On the way out of Trinidad we stopped at a large estate that used to be a sugar plantation. There we looked around the house and got to climb the very tall tower (with very steep steps) that was used to survey the slaves at work.

 If any slave were seen to be escaping, a signal would be sent to the house and a bell would be rung that would send out horseman and dogs to capture the slave. From the tower you could see for miles.

Next stop was Santa Clara and Che’s museum and memorial. Nothing was allowed to be taken in with you here. It was one of the most bizarre things. The memorial side you were not allowed to speak. The wall was carved stone faces and names of each of Che’s group and Che himself. It was rather like a scene from Game of Thrones – with less blood….

The museum side was unlike a European musuem and more like a collection of photos and items of Che’s with little to no description. I saw everything from Che’s inhaler to his machete and watch. What was evident was the real pride that Cuba has for Che. Our teacher was so passionate when showing us these items and the Cuban people there had the same enthusiasm. It was fascinating and inspiring.

We were supposed to go to another museum, but it was closed so we ended up going to our casa in Santa Clara. After a quick city tour (Santa Clara is really small) we were given a free afternoon. We decided after talking to the loveliest Cuban (in a mixture of Spanish and English) and having a guided tour that we would go to the cinema!

We quickly went to grab some food. What I love about Santa Clara is that it had none of the touristic feeling that Trinidad did. Everywhere you look it is local people… Buying clothes, food, home essentials, getting WiFi, you name it… They are there! We decided to eat like locals and have the mini pizzas that people were having.

After a few minutes of watching people, the knack to eating it was to fold it. I didn’t make too much of a mess!! We even managed to find real cola to take to the cinema with us.

Back to the cinema, we got our ticket for 50c to see Los puentes de Madison which turned out to be an old American film (The bridges of Madison). It was in English with Spanish subtitles. It was like being back at school watching off of a projector. The lovely lady from the guided tour was very proud to tell us that she did the projecting, it was awesome.

After 5 minutes into the film other locals turned up… Mostly teenage Cuban’s to watch the film. It was great being around locals and enjoying their cinema experience too. I thoroughly enjoyed the film and the whole day.

After the flicks it was Spanish lesson time, followed by cards and an early night ready to head back to Havana Tomorrow.

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