Category: Cuba, 2013

Trinidad: Pigs and Cigars, with Charm

April 29

Finish packing, then up for rooftop buffet breakfast before setting off at 8 for long bus ride. On bus, Nevada talks about photography, much of which I’d heard in China, but it’s helpful to hear it again and be reminded. Several of the people on the trips are techie geeks, so there is a lot of talk that I understand little to nothing about. It did confirm my impression that the small SLRs like my Sony are the future, as they’ve been greatly improved already.

After a pit stop, Nevada spends a good deal of time with me reviewing images. This is very helpful, and confirms that I really had no notion of what I was doing in photographing things in the old house we visited. I think I can do a considerably better job next time. We reviewed some color and black and white images from Ghana, which also was helpful to me in figuring out what works in color, what in black and white, and what in either.

Lunch in city of Cienfuegos at a marina was fair, then on to Trinidad, where we make the obligatory local artisan stop at a pottery place, Casa Chichi ceramic factory, which, mercifully, was brief. Drove to our hotel, Las Cuevas, located on a hill above the city, where we met Julio, a photographer and quite a character. We had a long time to visit on a patio with a very pleasant breeze, because check-in took forever. We bus and walk up to our rooms, past a pool with Cuban rap music blasting. This place is unlikely to be mistaken for an Oberoi, but will do fine for the three nights I’m here.

Bus ride down to town and walk to the main square, Plaza Mayor, where we’re told we should meet again 21/2 hours later to walk to dinner. Julio is leading a walk for those who want to follow, or we’re free to break off whenever we want. After about half a block with the group, I turn right and go off on my own, seeing no reason to photograph with ten others.

This turns out to be a very good decision. It gives me a chance to practice my Spanish and allows me to talk with and photograph interesting scenes: a guy smoking a cigar walking his pig, kids playing ball, folks in windows and doorways, and more.












Trinidad is a charming city of about 30,000, the third city to b founded in Cuba, in 1514. Streets and sidewalks are cobblestone, and buildings are painted pastel colors. Very nice-looking restaurants and souvenir and artisan galleries dot the area, attesting to the importance of tourism to the city’s economy. Situated on the South coast of the island, fresh fish are plentiful.

I stop for a beer at a cafe with music around seven, and, looking around at couples from other countries with Cuba guide books, I think it’s a shame that we in the US are prevented by our government from traveling around Cuba freely. About 7:45, I wander down to our meeting place and hook up with Robert. Later, Dustin meets us and walks us to the restaurant, Vista Gourmet, where we have dinner and drinks. My lobster dinner is very tasty, and with drinks and tip comes to 26 CUCs. Talk with Robert, Tom, Theresa and Nevada over dinner. Taxi back to the hotel, shower and in bed by 11 PM.

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