Food and Other Causes of Insomnia in Cuba

By Aurelio Pedroso (Progreso Semanal)

Havana photo by Juan Suarez

HAVANA TIMES – Not too long ago, I was talking confidentially with a famous and qualified doctor. I asked him if it was likely that people with high levels of responsibility in the country were able to get a good night’s sleep, amid the many urgent problems that the island faces.

During these times when the COVID-19 pandemic is almost out of hand and, on top of that, their determination to go ahead with an ambitious reforms plan for the economy and currency, within one of the country’s greatest economic crises.

My question did not suprise him. He barely hesitated and gave a brief answer, as if he were delivering the confirmed diagnosis to a patient he asked to sit down and to pay special attention to the new bad news and hopeful treatment.

“I’m pretty sure that they must be taking some kind of sleeping medication.”

Almost a whole year of dealing with this dangerous and deadly virus non-stop, which has presented problems for society in every aspect, any human being might suffer interrupted sleep with the most unsuspecting worry.

Unresolved issues

Food and shortages could also be among there more serious concerns, barely behind the effects of COVID-19. This with the aim of getting rid of it or at least keeping it under control.

There’s a very good reason why food was already an unresolved issue of national security, before SARS-CoV-2 reached Cuban soil. This was due to mistakes, misguided policies, delays, and the US’ determination to make life even harder on the island.

Nobody should doubt that these are decisive moments in the history of the Cuban Revolution. It’s a time that calls for a lot of intelligence and bravery to steer a new course. One that will allow the ship to reach port safely.

Some steps are being taken. These include incentives to encourage foreign investment and agricultural production. Likewise, the opportunity for small businesses to export and acquiring their legal status. The government calls these non-State-owned means of production, so as not to call them private companies or cooperatives.

Joe Biden’s arrival at the White House on January 20th, and Donald Trump leaving through the back door after all the harm he’s done, should be interpreted as a loophole for a more gentle and beneficial relationship with our historic neighbor/enemy.

Obama’s attempt to normalize relations should lay the groundwork to open new horizons in the economy, playing the game and respecting the rules established by both countries, which are well-known.

The day will have to come when we can go to bed with our tummies full, without the need for a sleeping pill. Otherwise, our nightmares will continue in bare daylight.

Read more by Aurelio Pedroso here on Havana Times.

3 thoughts on “Food and Other Causes of Insomnia in Cuba

  • I have some questions about agriculture in Cuba.

    You have an enormous quantity of unused agricultural land around Santa Marta, Guasimas(?)
    Conchita etc. Why isn’t it ALL being put to use for the production of food?

    Does the government’s agricultural department have a good reason for not doing this, or do the Cuban people not want to work at making this land productive?

    Agricultural development and production in this area is a necessity. Why is this not being pursued, not only in the areas mentioned, but everywhere that there are open fields (or land that could be cleared for agricultural production)?

    I understand that the Cuban government will give an individual citizen a parcel of land if they will work it and produce whatever crop is necessary. Is this just a rumour, or is it true?

    Don from Northern Canada

  • The men and women who died fighting during the revolutionary war of the late 50’s would be appalled at the condition that their sacrifices had led to. Building 5 star hotels for tourist while the Cuban people down the street live in buildings crumbling around them. Shameful.

  • What in the world does this gibberish actually mean?

    “Obama’s attempt to normalize relations should lay the groundwork to open new horizons in the economy, playing the game and respecting the rules established by both countries, which are well-known.”

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