The Neighborhood Representative Is Tired

Nonardo Perea

A typical neighborhood meeting with the local representative. Photo:
A typical neighborhood meeting with the local representative. Photo:

HAVANA TIMES — All of my neighbors were summoned to one of those neighborhood nighttime meetings that we have every once in a while.

Generally-speaking, I almost always go because I’m interested in knowing how things in our community are going, and also to have a little laugh at all of the silly things people talk about. I say silly things because they normally put forward problems that continue to go unresolved for years and years.

For example: a sewage ditch that drains onto the street and which has been affecting everybody for two years now, which hasn’t been fixed because the neighborhood representative himself has said, and just for the record I have this recorded on tape, that it´s the Public Health institution itself that hasn’t taken account of this issue in spite of the fact that the Marianao municipality has had many cases of dengue, and the recent appearance of Zika again.

The delegado (representative) explained to us that he was looking for a replacement because he was sick and very tired (I guess that’s because he hasn´t been able to find a solution for anything) and is looking for a young substitute, because he’s been the representative for the last 30 years and every time there’s a vote, he’s always elected.

The truth of the matter is that nobody is interested in filling this position, because we all know what that will mean. You have to deal with a countless list of demands that are never resolved because as I’ve already said before, there’s no fixing this mess.

Also attending was the neighborhood police sergeant (the same man who killed the dog of the health clinic’s doctor in cold blood) who spoke about the number of young criminals who were wandering the streets in the early morning hours and mentioned their criminal activities.

One or two neighbors complained too, because late at night, people who do nothing congregate on street corners and don’t let those who have to wake up the next day to go to work, sleep.

In the end, after a lot of badmouthing, the meeting ended and we all went back to our homes.

Today, when I woke up and went out onto the street, I confirmed that everything was exactly the same. People haven’t stopped throwing out their garbage on the street corner; young people continue to fly their kites from strangers’ rooftops, some residents play music so loud that they’re in competition with state-run clubs and wastewater continues to plow through the city´s streets.

However, it doesn’t matter, I only think about the representative who is very tired, and how nothing will ever change, because even like this, among the rot that surrounds us, our lives continue to be beautiful.

Nonardo Perea

Nonardo Perea: I see myself as an observant person and I like to write with sincerity what I think and live first hand. I’m shy and of few words; thus it’s difficult for me to engage in conversation. For that reason, my best tool for communicating is writing. I live in Marianao, Havana and am 40 years old.