As of now, we’ve been here for less than 24 hours and one experience sums up our whole entire situation —


A hummingbird flitted past me while Gia and I were walking along the path behind our condo to the beach.  He lingered for a while and even let us get super familiar before disappearing from sight. In life I’ve only seen a mocking jay hummingbird once, and it was for seconds. He hung out so long WE eventually had to move on. It felt serendipitous and surreal. The joy in Boogie’s eye as she watched the teeny bird hover and move on from flower to flower sent me right to that inner kingdom.

Those pure and spontaneous good feels that crop up–love.

Speaking of which, as it turns out Cuban people love Americans- as if they can tell the difference between the heart of the people and the policies of the government. Folks are super friendly and helpful. They’re happy to see you and proud of their country. Sometimes I wonder do we do the same. Do we love the Kenyans that were killed in the latest terrorist attacks as much as ‘we are Paris’? Do you hurt for the Palestinians as much as the victims of 911? Do we want to end the embargo as much as we wanted to bring back our girls? 

As an African American from Ferguson, MO, I feel like I have a responsibility to empathize with those that are oppressed, excluded or disadvantaged, no matter where they are all over the world. This is why I can recognize the humanity in the Muslim family in India, the Palestinians in the West Bank and the Cubans surviving the harsh reality of embargo. 

One thing is clear- the human condition is universal. Neither time, space, nor government can keep people apart.

At any rate, there’s more to come. We had to charge up today for tomorrow and what’s forthcoming– what better place than the beach.

After a delicious and colorful breakfast prepared in our home by our hosts, and a surprise trip to the ‘nicest beach in Havana’ by our homie and favorite driver Dayner Alvarez, here we sit taking in an unspoiled, mostly empty beach which I’m pretty sure is heaven on earth. This is our only beach day and it was supposed to rain, but it’s sunny, so….

Later Gators,

P.S. We walked a mile for this WiFi. #HardWork #Dedication #BePatientTho #NoLimitSolidiersIRL

Lookit at what was sitting on our coffee table!
They know my heart. It must have been time for a revisit!
Gia- “Mommy, what does this thing do?”
This is Dayner Alvarez– hardest working man in the taxi business.
We called her ‘momma’.
She saw me and Gia leaving the beach with a struggly situation and intervened.
Braided her up quick, so now all I have to do is 1 head.

Stay tuned!