Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Havana Running Part 6: Day Into Night

Preview: What Would Hemmingway Do?

It dawns on me about now that I can't even do the math through all the time zones to sort out how many hours it's been since I actually slept.  More than 24, at the very least.  
Though, in this moment I'm finding it near impossible to care.  I'm sitting on the terrace of a restaurant sipping a mojito while watching the daylight die, and the lights come to life over Plaza Habana Vieja to the sounds of competing live music from the cafes below.  

The balcony restaurant

There are street performers, people dancing, and children and dogs playing.  It's lively, though not in that overwhelming way that many city centers and tourist traps routinely become on a Saturday night.  This is festive, but approachable.  You almost get the feeling that this might all still go on all on its own even if the tourists left.  
The square itself, less than a block from my accommodations, could easily be something out of Florence or Madrid, but on a livable scale.  Buildings 3 or 4 stories high, and far better upkept than most others in the city.  There are no oppressive crowds, even though it's prime time on a Saturday 

Evening in Havana

Intuitively, I know I must be exhausted,but with this so close I find it hard to believe I'll be getting any real sleep until a few hours from now when the music ends and people go home (or at least don't stay here.). The longer I wait, the more the heat breaks, and the more comfortable it gets to just relax and watch this tiny slice of the world go by. 
I heard many times before coming here that the biggest challenge of Cuba was not to fall in love.  While so far I haven't managed to fall for the city generally, I just might understand the feeling in this particular moment. 

I just might have another.
Travel well & live memorably,

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