A lush, tropical breeze flaps the sheets, towels and underwear that were washed in the rundown apartment’s bathtub and now hang on the rooftop clothesline. An AM radio plays the sweet sound of the late Ibrahim Ferrer singing “Aquellos Ojos Verdes” (Green Eyes). His light fingers fairly trickle over the piano keys; his tenor voice takes you back to the days when Old Havana was a tourist Mecca, not the peeled paint, cracked windowed barrio it is today.
Once the Queen of the Caribbean, Havana struggles to shed the image of a decaying city of old cars, a place better for foreign visitors than its own people. Just last week, Vice Minister of Communications Wilfredo Gonzalez announced that Cubans will have access to the Internet “in the near future.” Once that door to the outside world is opened, the Queen may soon return.
Photograph by Jody Gaisford.
- Arts & Entertainment