Depending on who you ask you will hear different perspectives on Cuba’s politics, history, and culture.  This is why seeing and immersing myself in Cuba was a particularly special, educational, and life-changing experience.

A popular joke that lightly illustrates the heavy political cloud surrounding Cuba:

Suddenly a gust of wind blew up and swept the Pope’s zucchetto off his head and out into the sea. There it floated, bobbing on the waves. “Don’t worry, Your Holiness,” exclaimed Fidel, “I’ll get it for you!” He jumped over the side of the Popemobile, leaped over the seawall, and sped out …all the way out to where the zucchetto lay floating on the waves. Then he turned and dashed back… and jumped back into the Popemobile, without getting a drop of water on his clothes. “Here, Your Holiness,” he panted. The next day, newspapers all over the world reported this amazing incident. In Granma, the Cuban Communist Party newspaper, the headline read “Fidel is God; He Walks on Water.” In L’Osservatore Romano, the Vatican newspaper, the headline read “Pope Performs a Miracle: Makes Fidel Castro Walk on Water.” And in the Miami Herald, read by the Cuban exile community in Miami, the headline read “Castro Doesn’t Know How to Swim.”

Click here for my reports on the island from various travels

Road trip through Baracoa, Cuba