Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Cuba Va! Part 1

HELLO! On Monday 142 Brigadistas passed through U.S. Customs into Buffalo without a skirmish (an agent opened my luggage but probably quit searching on account of its stench!). The Associated Press covered the civil disobedience and 200+ publications picked up the story. Some press here, here, here, and here. I am proud to be part of the oldest anti-imperialist, Cuban solidarity organization that, along with Pastors for Peace, is credited by the U.S Government for creating an "enforcement and public relations dilemma." regarding its ban on travel to Cuba. Plus, nothing is more satisfying then sending a big FUCK YOU to Washington by politely declining to answer the questions of a federal agent.

In brief, the 40th Contingent of the Venceremos Brigade was historical. In our two weeks we transversed much of the country's geography ---> see maps above. We worked in the fields and celebrated the 26 de Julio (Raul gave us a shout during his big speech from Holguín!). Old friends reunited and new friendships formed. I am finding it hard to encapsulate such an experience into a blog post (not unlike last year). I often think of something poetic and meaningful to say and then it dissolves. In an effort to better illustrate my experience I skipped the photos and switched to video. Regrettably, I accidentally deleted all of the footage from our first week in the Eastern Provinces, including the most memorable exchange between the Brigade and a quinceñera court in Bayamo and the would be footage of the would be boyfriends Antonia and I met at the beloved mejunje in Santa Clara. Worse, I also deleted the best video ever of Jesus' new apartment in Cayo Hueso, Habana. I'm still bummed about that one and I don't want to talk about it (!). I'll post the vids as I get to them. First experiments with iMovie:

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