The Victory of Ideas

Posted in Cocolicious by akacocolopez on December 10, 2010

The first thing I noticed on the drive to my family’s house from the Jose Marti International airport in Cuba was that there were no billboards. Well, there were posters and murals, but not as I know them. Nothing commercial was fighting for my brain’s attention or dollars. The only images I saw were signs of ‘Revolucion’ which I suppose some people might call propaganda.

One statement painted on a wall has stuck with me: Victoria de las Ideas (The Victory of Ideas). This phrase is in reference to July 26th 1953, the date in which Fidel Castro and Che Guevara led the first rebel attack that spawned the Revolution. It was a failed attack and in its failure has everything to do with me today. Ideas are always changing, always in revolution. One thought leads to another which side tracks you for some time and then you realize that your mind has changed and its time to think of something new again because some ideas are good and some ideas are bad and some ideas can just be a little bit better. If ideas can be victorious I do not want to waste my own.

I wondered how my family’s beliefs would differ from my own before leaving. Did they really hate their country as much as any media outlet would lead me to believe?  Contrary to articles and blog posts like this, Cuba is not just an island whose residents dream of one day traversing the 90 miles it takes to reach Florida. Yes, there are things that must be changed, there is another revolution waiting to have its turn, but more than that it is an island filled with love, strength, and  intelligence. I learned this on a road trip from Habana to Santiago de Cuba with my family. Life is so different for them there and if they can one day visit the place I live they will see how life for me is different than all the stories they’ve heard and read. I too was an American in Cuba and this is what I saw.

Doll in living room, Vedado

El Malecon, Habana

Classroom, Habana

Botanica, Habana

Shop owner’s living room, Habana

(Photo Heavy Post)

Dead Chicken, Habana

Pins for sale, Habana Vieja

Vintage books, Habana Vieja

Man’s room, Vedado

Virgen de la Regla, Regla

Revolucion, Habana

Brooklyn in the house, Habana

Woman sitting, Habana

Defendiendo el socialismo, Habana

Woman walking, Habana

Frames, Vedado

Street Scene, Habana Vieja

Old Camera, Habana

Woman in bus, Habana

Recital, Habana

Che tattoo, Habana

Water fountain, Habana

Ceiling @ Museo de la Revolucion, Habana

Staircase, Habana

Muralb(Youth Communist League), Habana

La libreta click for more info, Vedado

Kitchen poster, Vedado

Transportation, Habana Vieja

Las Mercedes Church, Habana Vieja

Lunch stop, Habana

Cuba, Habana

Pigs, Santiago de Vega

Dog on roof, Santiago de Vega

Ladder, Santiago de Vega

Near El Santuario de San Lazaro, El Rincon

Closet space, Vedado

Street scene, Habana

Tunel de la Habana, Habana

Woman’s bedroom, Playa

Two militants, Habana

Secret tunnel l in El Castillo del Morro, Habana

Inside and outside, Vedado

Closet space, Vedado

School where my Great Grandmother once taught and lived, Arroyo Blanco

Living room, Bayamo

Flowers left for La Virgen del la Caridad del Cobre, Cobre

Offerings for La Virgen de la Caridad del Cobre, Cobre

Street scene, Santiago de Cuba

Jose Marti‘s Memorial, Santiago de Cuba

License plate, Santiago de Cuba

On the go, Santiago de Cuba

Fruit stand, Santiago de Cuba

Hair salon, Bayamo

My history (The center four:Great Grandpa Tomas, Great Grandma Elisa, Grandma Mireya, and Grandpa Rafael), Bayamo

Street scene, Bayamo

The Cuban 5, Habana

Train tracks, Habana

Fidel Castro, Habana

Living room, Vedado

Quincenera, Habana

Graffiti, Habana

Performers and painter, Habana Vieja

School kids, Habana Vieja

Front door, Vedado

Girl behind glass, Vedado

One Response

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  1. Mireya Diaz-Granados said, on December 10, 2010 at 7:43 pm

    I have no word to express my happiness when I read your article, is beautiful I like very much
    I am so proud of you.

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