Santa Clara, Cuba
Sleep was rough. Without a fan running at night, mosquitoes harass you like anything yet the propellers brought on a cough that persisted. Secondly, like the cars in Cuba, mattresses haven’t evolved in sixty years. The mattresses are still stuffed with springs that somehow brace one or two of your ribs. Ouch!
It was the second consecutive night of sleep discomfort. Room-partner, Sahil, took sick the night before, renouncing all he consumed for the whole day. “Use the toilet to do that, not the sink, please, Sahil!” I really did feel for him.
An hour drive took us to Santa Clara after a great two hour walk from Rodas’ precincts into country territory. Common imagery are, once again, horses and now cowboy hats. Farmers take to the fields of sugar cane, greens, orchards, beans and rice.
Our small contingent of Canadian monks were walked to our first venue in Santa Clara for speaking at, “Sol Teatro” off of a pedestrian-friendly street called Boulevard. Favourable responses came from all. Cubans love kirtan. Sahil, now feeling better, was at his optimum on the drum. Hayagriva mentioned that he was impressed by the youth attendance as well as the repeat presence by people from last year. Some have taken now to japa chanting and in the kirtan everyone has their moment to dance up a storm in the centre of our formed circle.
The final stop for today was at the Theosophical Society centre. This was a mature group of folks. The president, vice-pres., secretary, treasurer and members made it a point to come. Most of the group are familiar with Krishna’s teachings, most appeared to be firm believers in the soul’s transmigration. Chanting came natural to them. The only thing that appeared “new” was having a swami to visit them. I told them I’ll be happy to come again next year.
May the source be with you!