Don't even think about it

Changing of the guard between the Granma Memorial and the Museo de la Revolución.

   The reverence in which Cuba's leaders hold the artifacts of their long-ago struggle – the cars, the planes, the boat that carried Fidel Castro and his followers from Mexico to Cuba – is evident in the number of soldiers at the Granma Memorial.
   They stand on the catwalk beside the glass case that encloses the yacht; they walk quietly among the displays below. They change the guard in red-bereted unison on Calle Colon, now a fenced square between the memorial's eternal flame and the Museo de la Revolución, but 55 years ago a Havana thoroughfare-turned-battle zone.
   You cannot touch the Granma yacht. You could, I suppose, touch the other items, but it doesn't seem advisable.
   The soldiers look away from visitors. They are not there to engage in conversation. But I manage to catch the eye of one young guard and mime spinning the two-bladed propeller of a Kingfisher observation plane seized by the rebel army in 1958.
   He gives me a tight, yeah-yeah-I-get-it smile. I guess he'd seen that one before.

Prop-plane probably wouldn't have started anyway.

The guards avoid eye contact. They are not guides.

Touching the vehicles is not recommended, but
touching fellow visitors would appear to be OK.


Anonymous said…
Oh you rebel. Always pushing the boundaries.

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