Going to the Guanimar Club

Alfredo Fernandez 

The Guanimar Club

We headed to the Guanimar Club at Guanabo Beach on the east side of Havana, hoping to get there as soon as we could.  We wanted to make it in time to see the part of the show where a reggaeton singer livens up the night by inviting young women to come up on stage, and the audience encourages them to “take off what you got on top.”

Responding to that challenge, the girls will take off the light weight blouses covering their torsos.  The chorus then gets more demanding by asking the girls something like: “Take off what you got down below.” And they do; these young women have no qualms about complying with the request.

It’s now gotten to the point that women recently paraded around on stage completely naked while being filmed on cell phones.  Two of them took advantage of the occasion to make love with each other in public – not even caring that the next day the video would be circulating throughout Havana.

It’s worth pointing out that the young people who go to the Guanimar disco are from the generation that was born in the ‘90s.  Consequently, they’ve known nothing other than a dual currency, emigration, a press that says nothing, rural boarding schools, fast track teachers, school exams for sale, arranged marriages with foreigners, parents who separate before thinking things through, doctors demanding gifts for treatment, corrupt police, etc.

“Let’s go to Club Guanimar,” appear to say the ones who are devoted to that place.  “For a few hours we have the chance to forget our morals, since nothing makes sense in a social system that has failed to deliver what was promised.  It miscarried, impacting us the worse,” they seem to add.

Evidently the generation of young people who go to Club Guanimar is the one most affected when it comes time to finding a way out of the labyrinth of disillusions and shortages in which the Cuban nation has found itself.

The orgy in question —which today is shocking all of Havana— is not simply the result of a drug overdose in a bar full of young immature kids, as some prefer to believe – but something worse.  It’s a first bud of the senselessness that that is now taking root in those of us who live on the island.

What occurred in Guanimar bodes the reappearance of a Cuba that we thought was buried.  It seems that today it has returned with a vengeance accompanied by the worst feature of capitalism: the massive lay off of workers.

Alfredo Fernandez

Alfredo Fernandez: I didn't really leave Cuba, it's impossible to leave somewhere that you've never been. After gravitating for 37 years on that strange island, I managed to touch firm ground, but only to confirm that I hadn't reached anywhere. Perhaps I will never belong anywhere. Now I'm living in Ecuador, but please, don't believe me when I say where I am, better to find me in "the Cuba of my dreams.



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