Sunday, May 17, 2015

Cuba calling

Sometimes, I am easily influenced. The Chitlins Con Carne guitar is a good example. I didn't really have a good reason to buy a guitar, other than there was one that was available cheap, I have a vague unstated hobby of collecting musical instruments, and I thought I could turn it into a nice decoration for the music room. So I became a guitar owner.

My latest idea due to being easily influenced came on in a similar, surreptitious fashion, yet quickly became a lucid, 100% feasible notion, all in less than a week.

Which is why I’m pretty sure I will be traveling to Cuba before the year is out. Let me explain.

Mrs. S and I have been talking about a trip, almost continually since we got back from New Orleans in December. We've been talking for years about going someplace we've never been, and Costa Rica has been our front runner, but we always get sidetracked: What about Guatemala? Or Argentina? Or Brazil? Or Panama, Puerto Rico, Peru, Chile, Dominican Republic, etc. Part of the problem is, even though we've each been to over 50 countries, there are too many places we haven’t been. We just can’t decide. And last Saturday, as I’m reading the Wall Street Journal, there’s a long article about traveling to Cuba.
The first Latin-tinged CD I ever owned, and still one of my favorites.
Now Mrs. S, being Japanese, can go to Cuba anytime she wants. As a green card holder, she might not be welcomed back very warmly, but, if she came back, say, through Canada, I doubt they would give her a hard time. As for me, an American, I need to have a cultural purpose to travel to Cuba. Just being a tourist isn't enough to get you in and out. In fact, the WSJ article detailed some of the work of Horns for Havana is doing, and I started to get a notion of donating musical equipment so I can make the trip.

A couple of days later, the WSJ had an article about Arturo O’Farrill and it got my blood flowing for Cuba again. So I went back and read the article about Cuba again. And then I did the math. (It’s not cheap.) And I still want to go.

So, I’m going to try to go to Cuba, with me, my wife, and a bunch of clarinets and reeds and valves and whatnot. Maybe, I can make it happen.