Thursday, August 6, 2009

Habana - Capitolio Bld

Downtown Habana is quite spectacular with an array of beautiful old buildings, lots of public squares, boulevards, parks, gardens, theatres, museums and public buildings. The capitolio bld is the former parliament house used until the time of the revolution. It is similar in architecture and design to the capital bld in Washington. Today it is used for public meetings and as a museum. You can sit in the president's chair, as Fynn did, and roam around the spectacular foyer and the old Senate and Rep's chambers. The old parliamentary library has been turned into a free public library.

Camera hunting

After losing our camera somewhere in Habana we went hunting for a new one and checked out lots of camera processing shops and Cuban versions of department stores. Eventually whilst in a film processing store asking if they knew where we could buy a camera a shady lookn bloke with a large black bag full of 'second hand' cameras waved us outside and we did a deal. This is the first photo we took with our new camera - the bloke who sold it to us was reluctant to be in the shot.. We did wonder if our camera was in the bottom of his bag.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Habana and Vinales

Well we are here and having a fabulous time. Have visited lots of museums, stayed with local families, had ice cream at the Coppelia, lost our camera, bought a new camera ´second hand´from our man in Havana, been horesriding in the mountains, negotiated lots of situations in Spanish, seen a thousand images of Che (you know the one), explored caves and avoided eating roasted guinea pig. The family we are staying with in Vinales are wonderful and Mariano made cigars for us to go with the rum we were enjoying. Vinbales is a small farming village where tobacco, maize, pineappes, mangoes and rice are the staples. Lots of pigs, chickens, goats and quite a few tourists wandering about having a lazy time.

It isn´t that easy to get internet access and it is slow and in spansih so updating the blog isn´t our highest priority.

On our first day in Habana we got taken (literally) to a small local bar by a young guy called Parko who showed us some sights in return for a Mojito. Habana is spectacular and pretty full on with a lot of poverty but it seems to take a different form. Doing the basics each day is hard such as queing for 90 mins to get in the door of the bank and another 40 to get to the one teller. Cubans are incredibly patient and good natured about these daily sufferances.

We head off for a day of snorkelling tomorrow at Cayo Jutias and then head off to Cienfeugos and Trinidad. Time is flying but we are loving it.

Ciao - Julian and Fynn

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Happy Birthday eadie

Hi Gorgeous Eadie - Its hours before your birthday and we are trying to post a photo of you on the blog but everything is in spanish AAAHHHH ! Fynn and I love you heaps and miss you - we trust you will have a great birthday knowing that Mum and Louka and all your mates will look after you - happy birtday eade !

Sunday, June 28, 2009

Montego Bay

This is the beach were we've been swimming and snorkeling for the past few days. Has been hard to get Fynn out of the water (which is good) and he has really enjoyed exploring the reef and kayaking. The place were staying is an all inclusive resort and many guests are spending most of their days at the bar making sure they get their moneys worth. We've managed to exercise some control when it comes to the unlimited beer and cheeseburgers preferring the outdoors.

Bob Marley Museum - Jamaica

We've been in Jamaica for about a week staying in Kingston and Montego Bay. Kingston was great to visit and despite the obvious poverty and the hard edge to the place people were friendly and open. The guide book said the two things you don't do is get in a taxi that has no official taxi emblem or go to the downtown area near the market as its too dangerous - we did both on the first day and it was all OK. Our cab driver Horace was a government driver making a bit extra on the side and he had lots of good tips for us. We visited the Bob Marley Museum which was a must see for Fynn and the Jamaican national gallery - a must see for me. Caught the local bus from downtown that day which was an adventure but it was good to get amongst the locals. There were lots of school kids heading to the bus so I figured it couldn't be too much of a problem. Kids on the bus had good tips and advice for us as well.

Mystery Machine

This photo is for you Louka knowing how much you like Scooby Doo - couldn't actually find him or shaggy but universal studios does have an all you can eat deal so I guess they were busy.