Monument to the Pothole or Potential Hazard

Miguel Arias Sanchez

HAVANA TIMES — In the Guiteras neighborhood, right on 19th street and Casa Blanca Ave., there is a pothole which continues to exist and literally seems like it has been cut out by a human hand.

Everyone who travels there every day can give testament to my words.

It started off like every pothole does, small, but with cars, trucks and buses constantly going over it, it grew until it became what it is today, a big pothole.

You will be asking yourself what makes this pothole so special given the fact that Havana is full of them. Well, in this case, neighbors themselves and even one or two passers-by have tried to fill it. It was filled with soil and rocks a while ago, so that you could travel over it, although it went back to being the same hole as months went by.

It has been used as a plant pot and has become a traffic sign. Tall bushes were planted in it, as if it were some kind of clay pot. The plants were tall so that they could be seen from far-away, preventing vehicles from falling into it. All drivers go around it either to the left or right, no matter how fast they are going.

Buses that travel towards the Guanabacoa and Bahia bus terminal go down this road. As do state-owned vehicles, including all those that travel to municipal offices. I imagine that an official or someone with a position that influences it getting fixed, has traveled in one of these vehicles at some point.

It’s not just me, I have heard the opinion most people who go past this place have and their surprise, helplessness and the complaints grow just as the pothole does. “Unbelievable”, “it’s a lack of respect”, “nobody is interested in that”, are the things you hear. And then what?

As well as disfiguring the public aesthetic, it’s a potential hazard, especially at night when cars only realize it’s there when they are already on top of it.

We Cubans having financial problems in getting asphalt and the vehicles that are needed to fix the city’s roads is no secret. However, such a dangerous pothole shouldn’t exist because it can hurl a bus against pedestrians.

Until when? What are they waiting for? For an accident to happen? It needs to be covered with cement, asphalt, anything. Or is the US blockade also to blame for this pothole, which is used as an excuse to cover up our own shortcomings. This is clearly a problem of indifference in the face of a situation which could hurt everyone.

There is an empty slogan which is repeated a lot here: “let’s make our city more beautiful and loved.” With a pothole like this one, I’m certain we’ll never achieve that.

Miguel Arias

Miguel Arias Sánchez: I was born in Regla in 1949. That’s where I went to elementary and high school. Afterwards I took courses to be a teacher and did that for several years. I did my military service and as soon as I got out I studied formally to be a teacher graduating at the University of Havana. I taught in classrooms for nearly 20 years. I had the opportunity to travel and see another reality. I returned and am currently doing different self-employed activities.



2 thoughts on “Monument to the Pothole or Potential Hazard

  • We here in the UK also have plenty of potholes in our roads which are gradually getting worse, however not quite as bad as these in Cuba.

    Reply
  • Perhaps it is an escape tunnel for the free Cubans movement, you know the underground? How deep is the hole and what is below the surface?

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Photo of the Day

Photo of the Day
Picture 1 of 1

Veterans Cemetery, Tennessee, USA.  By Phillip Gregg (USA).  Camera: Nikon D810

Submit your pictures to our Photo of the Day section
You don’t have to be a professional photographer, just send an image (in black and white or color), with a photo caption indicating where it was taken (city and country), type of camera or cell you used, and a small description about it.
Note: it is better for our format if you send horizontal orientation pictures. Even square will work but vertical is a problem.
Send your picture with your name and birth country, or where you reside, to this email address: yordaguer@gmail.com