The thing is, after more than half a century living with an forbidding embargo, the US recently announced economic openings towards Cuba that I can assure you will erase most of those ‘back in time’ feelings Cuba gives you today.
I hope to give you a flavour of the most evident ones that will become dinosaurs in no time. And for those that know and love Cuba, these will be the biggest slap in the face when they change:
• Time will no longer mean time: The first free foreign investment contracts between Cuba and the US are in the works as we speak. But regardless of the avalanche that’s coming, Capitalism is not there yet. You don’t see it in the streets. You don’t breathe it everywhere you go. Everything is not yet about money. For Cubans, time still means just time. Its value is not yet money. Its value is about how good they feel around you, what good of a friend you are, about being a true human being. As soon as Cuba and the US become real BFFs, all that will completely change.
• Manana will mean yesterday or last week: I foresee that, as soon as Americans touch foot in the island, Cuba will need to speed up. Your Mohito will get to your table way faster, but you will not have that waitress pulling a chair to join you at your table trying to get her tongue rolled around pronouncing your name, asking you where are you from, inviting you to her home for a Cuban diner that night. That will completely change because they will need to serve more people in less time, and Americans are known to want what they want by yesterday when they only arrived today. So, it won’t be longer about leaving it so you can do it manana! This is the last time in your life you’ll see Cuba at the speed (or lack of) it moves today.
• Talk to each other will no longer exist: Today, there is no wi-fi everywhere to go. To get connected to those that are not beside you right at this moment is an expensive hassle that no one cares for. So what that really mean? People do talk to each other. People that are with you are there with you and they are all yours! Answering a cell phone in Cuba toda costs an arm and half of the other. If a cell phone rings, they are still looking and smiling at you. If they answer the phone is probably because somebody actually died. You’d probably want them to answer that call anyway. The re-establishing of the relationships comes with plans for wiring Cuba up to the Ying Yang. When all this goes thru Cubans will be connected to each other and to the rest of the world. The same thing that has happen to the rest of the world will happen to them. Those on the phone are more important that those who actually made the effort to go see you in person. It won’t take long until the person right beside you at the beach is no longer winking a smile and extending their hand with a drink. They will be connected to the internet or talking on the phone with someone completely disconnected and far away from that beach. Go visit Cubans you can still talk to them.
And these are only the 3 ways-of-life changes that will make Cuba a completely different world than it is today.
This is your last chance. Go see the true Cuba before it’s too late.