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Almost Like a Trip to Mars / Rosa María Rodríguez Torrado

Almost Like a Trip to Mars / Rosa María Rodríguez Torrado
Translator: Unstated

I long to take a trip around my country. Not a luxurious or comfortable
one — although that is my right — but a road trip, in which I would have
to make stops to satisfy basic needs, and follow my road with a bread,
cream cheese and jam sandwich in one hand, and a container with liquid
"to down" in the other.

I remember a traditional Cuban song that suggests in its refrain: "Know
Cuba first and foreign parts later." It is a musical maxim that for a
long time has no longer been realistic or viable. I would like to take
an excursion through Cuban towns and the countryside and I imagine I
would follow a list of people in the emerging independent civil society,
who for lack of resources cannot come to the capital and who deserve our
solidarity. I could bring them human and material support as a way to
show reciprocal altruism or the ethics of reciprocity and fraternity,
that we owe to all those involved in patriotic destinies.

this is how I saw myself climbing into a car for stretches, in a tractor
for others, and even a cart: one drawn by a horse and another pulled by
a yoke of oxen. Let my imagination go! But beyond that, I have a real
and latent interest to follow this continually postponed path and to
live with each one the day-to-day reality that hits Cubans living far
from Havana.

I would like, for example, to go to Villa Clara and visit our compatriot
"Coco" Farinas, and personally involve myself in his shattered health
and recuperation. After the death in suspicious circumstances of another
Villa Claran, Juan Wilfredo Soto, this last May, "Coco" was again on a
hunger and thirst strike, demanding that the government publicly
announce and commit that it would not use violence against opponents;
something that has not yet occurred.

In short, I don't know if I can carry out my plan for the journey. For
now, I am busy continuing to work for the advent of better times and
leaving this scenario behind, in which I spend my time as am illusionist
"undertaking administrative pirouettes" to try, each month, to pull "a
rabbit out of the hat of my finances."

June 19 2011

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