By Irina Echarry, photos: Caridad
Yes…we still have weddings. Despite the fact that, beginning in the 1980s, couples began to prefer to just unite and live together, without signing papers or putting on white dresses or hot suits, there are still Cubans today who enjoy the party and the fancy dress.
Not that long ago, many got married just to receive the cases of beer and the government-subsidized honeymoon; but these no longer exist.
Those who plan to have a wedding today need at least 500 CUC (US $625) to invest in this venture… and this would be only for a small amount of guests… without taking into account the honeymoon, of course. The total sum involves more than two years salary for a Cuban professional.
Nowadays, Cubans get married in churches, notaries, weddings centers… and rental homes, like this wedding in a seaside neighborhood on the east side of Havana.
Here, as in all weddings, the bride and groom kiss; while people scream, laugh and cry out of emotion. People also eat and become contagious with love.
Children escape the boredom of a grownups party or become seduced by the beauty of sweets and balloons. The bride and groom take a lot of pictures with relatives, friends and even some stranger who crashed the party to eat and drink for free.
There is always an aunt or a cousin making sure the bride is perfect or bent on taking the bouquet home.
Many leave at the established time; others prefer to enjoy the music up until the last moment, while some use the opportunity to celebrate their not yet formalized wedding.
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