Tag Archives: international

The BlackGringa Talks….


Yes…every so often we record ourselves saying relatively random and superfluous things.  And today we thought we  would share some of those things with you.

Why So Many Cuban School Children? – Gallery


QUESTION – Little Lucie, why did you take so many pictures of school children?

RESPONSE – I think the school children here would be interested in them, because they would be really interested in how they look and how they dress.

Presenting Little Lucie’s Gallery of Cuban School Children

Trinidad, Cuba – Almost Speechless


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What can I say about this place to do it justice?  Nothing much, which is why I placed the pictures first. If there were a fairy tale set in colonial era Cuba, it would all take place in this town that borders the warm azure waters of the Caribbean.

Cobblestone streets, ancient walkways, ruined churches, and amazingly restored homes…..simply took my breath away.  I even had a knight in shiny cowboy boots tell me that since I was unmarried and had no boyfriend, I was all his….wow!!

Sorry, Cuenca, Ecuador…I have a new (if totally unattainable) love in my life and it’s name is Trinidad.  It’s too bad I can’t live in Cuba though, since as a non-Canadian foreigner I can only be in the country for 60 days max in a single visit (Canadians get up to 6 months), and there is very, very limited entrepreneurship allowed here (and none by individual foreigners not married to Cubans – with a few exceptions). And what is allowed is highly controlled by the State..or black market.

That said…please allow me to fantasize!!

Almuerzo (Lunch) – Ecuador vs Cuba


Cuba is definitely part of the Latin American/Caribbean  club for low cost, flavorful meals….if you eat in peso restaurants, not geared for tourists (which is why it is a peso restaurant).  Cuba has two currencies (1) the national peso is what salaries are paid in and (2) the CUC, which is what tourists use and it is the currency for modern or big ticket purchases. The CUC is pegged to the US dollar 1:1 and 25 pesos = 1 CUC. 4 lunches at a peso restaurant in Camaguey cost 163 pesos ($6.50) and included a quarter of roasted chicken for each person, drinks, rice, a side salad for one person and a corn-mash side.  In Santiago, our meal  for two people was 20 pesos ($0.80) and included a whole fish, rice, a vegetable side dish (stewed yucca), and juice.

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So eating out in Cuba is on par with eating in Cuenca, Ecuador if you are comparing peso restaurants to almuerzo specials.  However, Cuban restaurants were the CUC is the currency of choice are by definition more expensive and are usually on par with restaurant prices in the US.