A Walk Through the Streets of My Havana

HAVANA TIMES – No matter where you go, the streets of Havana are destroyed. It seems as if a rain of meteorites has fallen, leaving its marks on the asphalt. The only avenue somewhat spared from these craters is 23rd Street, a central street in Vedado. The rest look like peripheral alleys, making it increasingly difficult to traverse.

I don’t have a car, but I do have a bicycle, with which I have to maneuver 20 pirouettes to avoid getting a flat tire or not losing my balance. Such public works haven’t been repaired in countless years. I think that, at any moment, we’ll have to pay to get the streets fixed, just like with other public services such as Aguas de la Habana, ETECSA, or the Manufactured Gas Company. These are entities that exist and offer services to the population, but when you need them, there’s an immense waiting list because. In reality, they are looking for you to pay under the table for priority service, which should be promptly attended to, given the severity of the issue.

On the other hand, water accumulates in each street crater, water that stagnates and causes dirt and bad smells; it attracts bugs and, therefore, diseases. And here we reach another important point if we continue this walk through the streets of Havana, our capital. At every corner, there are garbage containers, overflowing, smelly, accumulating vectors in the same way, leading to community infections.

The photos show exclusively streets in Vedado, Plaza de la Revolución, one of the most central municipalities in the city. It wasn’t “so bad” before, but after COVID-19, there’s been a regression in everything. And community hygiene, something so important to care for and maintain, seems to not matter to those who manage our Havana.

We live in a city that is being destroyed, that we let be destroyed. No one seems to care beyond their property or their “private” establishment. It seems that we don’t want to do anything other than keep throwing trash on the corners and watching the water run.

Read more from the diary of Kamil Kenders here.

Kamil Kenders

I am old enough to move forward in search of opportunities. I like to dream but walk with my feet firmly on the ground. I love freedom and the sensation it provokes in me. I consider myself a fair person with solid principles. I enjoy reading and writing, but above all, the power of words as a tool for distraction, learning, and salvation.