Busy day in Havana

Wednesday, 6 May 2015

Our new lodgings were private and comfortable but there was no view. The breakfast consisted mostly of boiled eggs which Susie will not eat, so we left the room early, retrieved some washing from Alberto and left a pack with him for safekeeping. We would have no need for our snorkelling gear on the next leg of our journey to Las Terazzas. We booked one additional night in the room with the balcony for the night we would return to Havana, and we then settled up with Señor Lima, who had kindly covered the gap in our accommodation at short notice.

Our business continued at the Hotel Inglaterra where at long last we downloaded the elusive tickets for our flight to Baracoa. We also booked a bus to Las Terazzas for the following day. We then took our thumb drive to a business office in the Hotel Parque Centrale where they printed out our airline tickets for a fee. After that, we walked to the ATM on Calle Obispo where Susie withdrew a wad of Converible Pesos and some moneda nacionale for good measure. We had a coffee and a Tu Kola (Cuban cola) on the Plaza de Armas where we chatted with some street stall vendors who sold reproductions of popular Cuban film posters. We had plans to buy a roll of these towards the end of our trip.

We had to hoof it back to Centro because we needed to relocate one more time. We had booked a room in casa Mariam y Sinai on Calle Neptuno with our friends Johnny and Glynnis. After the formalities were completed, we caught a bicycle taxi to the Museum of the Revolution.

The museum is located in an impressive but somewhat dilapidated palace. It is a rambling affair, and whilst many of the exhibits are interesting, they also rely too heavily on text and many are showing their age. Later in our journey we explored museums in Santiago de Cuba and Playa Girón that were better designed and maintained. Nevertheless, for travellers who are keen to learn about Cuba’s revolutionary history, the Museum is well worth a visit.

After spending some hours educating ourselves, we went to Prado 12 for evening drinks with Johnny and Glynnis. There was an excellent salsa band playing on the diminutive patio and we bought some CDs to remember them by.

Evening drinks at Prado 12 with Johnny and Glynnis
Evening drinks at Prado 12

Unfortunately the ceviche was no longer available, so when our appetites were sufficiently whetted, we walked to a restaurant on Calle Aguacate that had been recommended to Johnny by another traveller. Johnny was accosted by some jineteros along the way. When we found the restaurant, it was booked out. So we headed back to the Plaza de Catedral and took a table at a state-run restaurant right next to the ancient, eponymous, lop-sided edifice. The company was excellent; the location superb, and even the food was okay. But the service was lousy.

We returned to the casa Miriam y Sinai on Neptuno and bid farewell to Johnny and Glynnis. The following morning, they were returning to Australia and were heading west to Las Terrazas.

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