The Negativity of Cubans

By Nike

HAVANA TIMES – Today, and for many years, Cubans have been going through periods of great instability in all senses, both financial, which is very strong, and the sentimental and emotional one, which for me has a very important weight in the life. All those experiences and the adverse present have marked many Cubans a lot, to the point of turning them into very negative people.

Right now people are on the border between sanity and going completely insane.

I know a lot of people you can’t even talk to, and I understand them. However, at the same time, I can’t deal with seeing only the negative side of things. I try to help them by changing the repetitive subject: prices that go up every day, illnesses and other bad things. It is almost impossible to have a conversation because they just talk and repeat the same thing ten times.

Yesterday a friend came to the house. I always offer him coffee, if I it, or tea, even from plants in the patio. He had the need to talk about the last hurricane and the horrible general blackout that all Cubans suffered in those days.

He told me how he went through it and that he had to take the chicken to Havana so it wouldn’t thaw because he has two small granddaughters. He said the mosquitoes bit him so much that he thought he was going to catch dengue. Well, not to tire you out, it was all very bad.

Okay, I understand, we all go through that, and I don’t want to belittle the damage, but in half an hour he had already told me everything and in the two hours he was in my house he didn’t stop talking about the same things for a minute, even though I tried several times to change the subject.

A few days ago, I saw a documentary from the Czech Republic and one thing caught my attention: the narrator of the documentary goes to a coffee shop and asks for a cappuccino. The clerk does not understand and tells her with a very bad character that he is not going to serve her anything. The lady realizes what is happening to her. She explains to us that this town has suffered a lot, the Second World War and the totalitarian state imposed by the Soviet Union, and that this has changed their character.

Going back to the issue of Cubans’ negativity, I believe one must fight against that and not get carried away as if it were a stream of dark and gloomy things. You have to float, go out, breathe, and not allow the current to drag you…

I think that we attract many of the things that happen to us. If the Cuban of today is so negative, pessimistic, fatalistic, and also hypochondriac, an entire island with that attitude will be deformed and destroyed in a short time.

That is why there are so many people who prefer to run away from it.

Read more from Nike’s diary here.



Nike

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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2 thoughts on “The Negativity of Cubans

  • I feel for you in Cuba. I wanted to say something about the reception visitors receive in the Czech Republic: museum, airport or wherever you get poor etiquette towards tourists. Is this a hangover from totalitarianism? I doubt that.

  • Dear Nike, I am sad to see the difficult times in Cuba but also to see a call for hope and an effort to make things better. I have written a few articles for Havana Times but started to despair as I witnessed the suppression of demonstrators or protestors and I didn’t want to seem naive. However, there is much to love in Cuba and in Cubans and so I am hopeful. I think that the best thing would for current leaders to study Jose Marti again. He said that it was the civic duty of everyone to protest for what they believed is right. I also recall, positively, the reforms of Raul Castro “without haste but without pause”. I hope to return soon and expect that what is good in Cuba will be preserved, that US policy will change and that, with the encouragement and support of other countries, the political and economic situation will evolve – but based on the self determination of Cubans, not imposed by others who have their own problems.

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