Home Cuba Cubans Want Much More Than an End to the U.S. Embargo: NYT

Cubans Want Much More Than an End to the U.S. Embargo: NYT

Cubans Want Much More Than an End to the U.S. Embargo: NYT

In the last month, Cuba has been rocked by the largest antigovernment protests in decades in response to the country’s Covid-19 crisis, food and medicine shortages, a shrinking economy and longstanding restrictions on rights. The protests have been largely peaceful, with Cubans spontaneously joining together on the streets, calling for freedom and demanding an end to the dictatorship. But in Cárdenas, a city in the province of Matanzas that is the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic, protesters overturned a police car and looted a government-run store, signaling that for Cubans, the problems extend beyond the long-running U.S. trade embargo, Armando Chaguaceda and Coco Fusco write for the New York Times.

We wandered the site with busloads of other tourists, yet strangely the place did not seem crowded. I’m not sure if it was the sheer size of the place, or whether the masses congregated in one area and didn’t venture far from the main church, but I didn’t feel overwhelmed by tourists in the monastery.

Feeling refreshed

Headed over Lions Bridge and made our way to the Sofia Synagogue, then sheltered in the Central Market Hall until the recurrent (but short-lived) mid-afternoon rain passed.

Feeling refreshed after an espresso, we walked a short distance to the small but welcoming Banya Bashi Mosque, then descended into the ancient Serdica complex.

We were exhausted after a long day of travel, so we headed back to the hotel and crashed. I had low expectations about Sofia as a city, but after the walking tour I absolutely loved the place. This was an easy city to navigate, and it was a beautiful city despite its ugly, staunch and stolid communist-built surrounds. Sofia has a very average facade as you enter the city, but once you lose yourself in the old town area, everything changes.

If You Have It, You Can Make Anything Look Good

Clothes can transform your mood and confidence. Fashion moves so quickly that, unless you have a strong point of view, you can lose integrity. I like to be real. I don’t like things to be staged or fussy. I think I’d go mad if I didn’t have a place to escape to. You have to stay true to your heritage, that’s what your brand is about.


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