Mother’s Day in Cuba

By Nike                                                  

Gladiolas

HAVANA TIMES – Even though it was earlier in the month, I’d like to tell you my thoughts about this special day that was Mother’s Day in Cuba, which we celebrate on the second Sunday in May.

Everybody who could, traveled to their mother’s home to celebrate this beautiful day. Most people ate chicken for lunch, which you could buy with the rations booklet on Friday, and which is now selling for 35 pesos per pound. Everybody gets a pound with the booklet. Most mothers received practical gifts such as personal hygiene items, which are well-received right now.

Cubans don’t miss a chance to celebrate, much less on this day, and even though we have the habit of saying “la cosa esta de madre” (having a mother of a day) when things are bad, we try and have a good time on this day and foget the bad omen of what having a “mother of a day” is.

Mother’s Day cards they sell every year at the post offices.

In spite of everything we’re experiencing right now, you could see joy in my neighborhood and I liked that people were able to forget their problems, even for a day.

A typical Mother’s Day gift in today’s Cuba

Maybe lots of people don’t see it this way. But that was the impression I got this beautiful day. I even received a gift from a neighbor who gave me a bar of soap with a card. A gesture that really made me happy. I thanked her by giving her two purple masks I had made, as it’s the color of Saint Lazarus, the saint she worships, along with a little bar of soap.

Flower vendors passed by and many people on my block left their homes to buy flowers for their mothers, grandmothers and aunts.

Living in need or not, nobody can take Mother’s Day celebrations from my people.

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I was born in Havana, Cuba. All my life I have had the sea as a landscape. I like being close to it, feeling its breeze, its smell, as well as swimming and enjoying the wonders it gives us. Thanks to the manual skill that I inherited from my parents, I have been able to live off crafts. I work primarily papier-mâché, making puppets for children. I write for Havana Times for the possibility of sharing with the world the life of my country and my people.


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