Day Three- Making Friends
The third day was a Saturday and it was the first day that I went out and about on my own! Well, not on my own, but not with my mom, either. My friend Eleanor (from HS), put me in contact with some Princeton students that are studying in Cuba. I started the day with breakfast and more chatting with Leonelito about living in Cuba. He also told me about some clubs to check out.2 hard-boiled eggs // oatmeal with sugar // espresso
After breakfast, Yoselin called me to get together! I was so excited to have people to talk to! Not that family isn’t exciting, but it was hard to follow along with Spanish all the time and talking about family things gets old. I was ready for some fun 🙂
I took a cab to Havana Vieja with my mom and she left me to do her own exploring while I met up with Yoselin.
Yoselin and I went to Cafe TV for lunch, chatted for almost two hours and I had a great time! We both had chicken/rice and beans/ plantains/ ice cream and beer. Healthy dining! She was seriously so nice we bonded really quickly. After lunch, we walked to the market and she bought a pair of sandals. Then we headed to a Jazz club that has shows every afternoon. The place was packed for 2:00 in the afternoon, so we only stayed for a few minutes. After lunch, we made our way back to the house where the Princeton students are staying. The house was not only incredibly beautiful, but HUGE. It housed 35 students with multiple apartments with kitchens, living rooms, dining rooms and bedrooms. There was also a main dining area, a kitchen, a cook and a full time guard. Reminded me of The Real World…for multiple reasons! I met a bunch of the students and everyone was so nice and welcoming. I met Yoselin’s roommate, Denise who was also so, so kind. I’m happy they live in the US so we will be able to see each other again. Denise showered and then the 3 of us caught a cab to Havana Vieja to meet up with Yoselin’s boyfriend. We walked around more, hung out and chatted.
I eventually caught a ride home to shower, eat and get dressed for a night out! I also packed clothes for the beach the next day. Fun stuff.
I took a taxi back to Yoselin and Denise’s place and we got ready to go! I don’t have any pictures from the night, and I wish I did. Buuuut, we went to a club called Fabrica de Arte. The line was out the door and around the corner. We waited for over an hour and they said it was more packed than they had ever seen. This place was awesome- it was an art museum as well as a movie theater and then had multiple bars and dance floors. There was also an outdoor courtyard that stayed open after the club closed around 2:30. Usually it closes at 4:30, but that night it closed at 2:30 because…Cuba. Since no one wanted to go home so “early”, we headed for the Malecon, which runs along the ocean. You could see groups of young people chatting and laughing, and we did the same. Some people wanted to stay to watch the sun rise, but that just wasn’t happening. I was fading quickly, so we walked home and got back around 5 am! I was sooo tired, but we were all up by 9 am for a day at the beach!
Ah, getting to the beach! Quite the adventure. We had heard that you could get to another beach for 1 CUC each (about $1.00), but everyone we asked either charged way too much, or didn’t know what we were talking about. We were being pointed in all different directions so we eventually found a family that was heading to another beach (Tarada) and told us to tag along! Nine of us piled into a Jeep-taxi and we were on our way!
First thing first, we had lunch with a view. I was absolutely starving from having not eaten and the late night out. Then…to the beach! We didn’t want to rent chairs, so we laid in the sand and it was windy and blowing! We eventually made our way to the pool which had a view of the beach and was so much more comfortable. I loved it. I finished an entire book (Orphan Train- a great book! Read it if you’re looking for a quick read) and just relaxed…and got really burned but oops.
I took a collectivo home and excitedly told mom and Yolanda about my day while eating a huuuuge plate of food.
We were supposed to go to a dance club called 1800 that night (Sunday), but after a shower, I was so unbelievably exhausted from the sun + no sleep the night before. I called them and told them I would catch up with them in the next couple of days! They later told me that they went out and had so much fun! I enjoyed my sleep, though 🙂
Tomorrow- visiting the cemetary and other adventures.