Archiv der Kategorie: Allgemein

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Series: 5 secret signs that you are in Cuba

 

When you are in Cuba you will know it in a second, because beside rum, tobacco and salsa the main signs that you are in Cuba are:

 

  1. Old Cars

Quite stereotypical for Cuba, but it is really one of the first thing every visitor recognizes. These pre revolutionary cars are still shining, polished and driving hundreds of people around every day.  And not only the cars are ols, also trains, trucks and everything that has to do with transportation will make you realize how creative cubans are to keep old things in a very good condition.

Old but still shiny
Old but still shiny

Oldtimer in the streets of La Habana

  1. No real timetables

In Cuba, everything a bus, a car or a train comes when it comes. Than can be today, tomorrow or in three days. And nobody will be able to tell you exactly when the transport is arriving or leaving. Overland  trucks for people will start when the space is full. That can be 6am or 6pm. If you want to travel in Cuba you will train your patience without doubt.

 

Sometimes you can wait inside, even the driver is not there.
Sometimes you can wait inside, even the driver is not there.

 

 

  1. Political street art

Street art and graffiti are normally a form of protest and resistance. In Cuba you can see also the very conform and political government supporting streetart.

These always repeating and nostalgic pieces of sort are giving the streets this unique flair you can only discover in Cuba.

Tu ejemplo vive, tus ideas perduran
Tu ejemplo vive, tus ideas perduran

 

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4. Natural Paradise

If you open your eyes and you can’t see nothing than real nature around you, you are probably in Cuba. Especially the small towns and the eastern coast is like a trip to the surrealistic landscapes of the magic realism in latin america.

Abandoned beaches, so natural that even the coconut leaves are still there, quietness and peace and only the sound of the ocean…. that is the wild side of Cuba.

magical reaslism becomes real!
An abandoned beach: magical reaslism becomes real!
Nothing but nature in Baracoa.
Nothing but nature in Baracoa.

 

 

  1. ‘Pizza de queso’

I know.. Cuba has a lot to offer, one of the best rums, cigars, culture, beaches… But the food is definitely not one of the things that are known by the world. But still, Cubans eat everyday and if they don’t eat rice, beans and meat they love the cheese pizza. This pizza is more like a thick  pancake like base, topped with some ketchup salsa and cuban melted cheese. Sometimes you get them clapped together, sometimes the cheese is not yet melted and sometimes you have to wait ages for your pizza but it is the number one street food in Cuba, no matter where you go.

The famous but unspectacular 'pizza'
The famous but unspectacular ‚pizza‘
Everything is out, but pizza is still there...
Everything is out, but pizza is still there…

Series: 5 signs you are in Jamaica

Ever wondered what happens when you go to sleep and the next day you wake up in Jamaica?

What cool things can you do in Jamaica? Things that are not so obvious when you think about this crazy caribbean Island for the first time?

Let’s see which are 5 serious signs that you are in Jamaica, beside stereotypical Reggae, Beach, Ganja and Rum!

 

  1. Rasta Culture

Long dreadlocks, green, gold and red hats, bags and flags, Haile Selassie and Jah…

Even if the majority of the Jamaican people call themselves Christians the signs and symbols of the rastafarian culture are visible in everyday moments.

The strong visibility is also made possibly through the music and the cultural spreading.

The Rastafari Movement is a religion which became popular in the 1930s in Jamaica and was introduced to western cultures through the worldwide spreading of Reggae music in the 1970s.  The origins of this religion are ethiopian- hebrew and are related to the bible.

If you are in Jamaica and also in other regions of the Caribbean you will always see a lot of Rastafarian.

IMG_7368                A rastafarian priest during a religious ceremony.

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A religious ceremony during the saturday sabbat in the Blue Mountains, close to Kingston.

IMG_7369 Haile Selassie I was the Emperor of Ethiopia from 1930- 1974

IMG_7352The bible: The origin of the rastafarian movement.

 

 

  1. Sunday: Family days at the beach

 

It is hot, it is Sunday and you want to enjoy a bath in the crowd? You get the chance for that word for word at a public beach close to a big city! You can share the beach and the waves with families, couples and the hip people.
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crowdy beach in Hellshire, a beach close to Kingston (direct bustransfer from Half Way Tree and Downtown)

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  1. Perfect sunsets

No compromise on this, if you are looking for perfect sunsets like this one… there is only one place to stay.  Ans don’t forget to enjoy this view with a perfect sundowner 🙂
IMG_9400  Sun goes down in Treasure Beach, Jamaica

 

IMG_20140726_193144Sunset at Beverly Hills in Kingston.

 

  1. Street sales

Loud dancehall tunes, the smoke of grilled jerk chicken is in the air, people are shouting constantly.  Have an eye on your valuables and take a brave step into Kingstons exciting sales paradise: Downtown.

You can find everything you need on these street markets.

DSCF3765 Kopie

I guess you can find a beach outfit out here…

DSCF3764 Kopie                       Everybody is busy… selling and buying

 

 

5. Live Music 🙂

Mhm…no idea what to do tonight? Why don’t you look up a live music event in your area? If you are in Kinston, Mandeville or Montego Bay the chances are very good that  you can see a world class reggae or dancehall artist for a low budget.

IMG_7491 Chronixx live at an unplugged concert in Kingston, July 2014

IMG_7482                                      The crowd it loving it…

IMG_7494A special setting: Open air, live music at the edge of the blue mountains.

 

Log: Guantánamo

 

After months of travelling I passed every possible feeling. From excitement, anticipation, anger, frustration, love, fear, stress, exhausted,lucky,  annoyed to thankful. But the hardest feeling I kept in my mind was a big question mark about my coming and going feeling of happiness.

 

Sitting in a overcrowd  ‚Camion‘, what is not more than an old truck with some hard metal reihen to sit on,  from Guantánamo to Baracoa in the most eastern part of Cuba i felt too lucky.

After an unplanned night in Guantánamo me and my travel friend finally were lucky enough to get on one of this pre revolutionary trucks, more than 60 years old but still rolling and transporting about 30 crazy school boys, farmers, children, pigs, goats, chicken and us two.

After that seven hour trip our clothes were soaked in sweat, rust, rum and rainwater.

 

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We stopped every 15 minutes because the driver had to say ‘hola’ to some friends on the road, to piss on the street, to eat a pineapple, to drink some rum or just because he wanted to stretch his back.

We were pushed together on the smallest space in the truck and constantly asked by the curious and friendly cuban man where are we from and why we are traveling with the uncomfortable camion.

Even if this trip was hard it was one of the funniest and luckiest  experiences we bonded with our rum drinking neighbors, learnt that  roosters like  flavored ice-cream like humans and that potholes in the size of a cow are the best communication starters.

 

Other tourists looked at us with a face of unbelief, curiosity and envy when we told them about our trip.