Recently I've been devouring books. I read a couple of kind of girly novels that were in the SLC book shelf, which contains all of the castaway books that get left behind when people leave Cuba. But Alejandro has also been cultivating quite a collection of English books left to him by people from the program. So, from him I've gotten a collection of short stories by Agatha Christie, Cuba Diaries: an American Housewife in Havana, and the Motorcycle Diaries.
I've already dug into the short stories by Agatha Christie, which have included my favorite detective, Hercule Poirot. I'm almost done with the Cuba Diaries, which is about the wife of a european business exec living in Havana. I haven't really been able to put it down since I started reading it yesterday. It shows a side of Cuba that I've been aware of ever since I realized that foreign businesses actually do business in Cuba. But nevertheless, it's tantalizing to hear about cocktail parties with so-and-so famous cuban artist, and the funny things that party leadership say at dinners with ambassadors and business leaders. And I marvel at the amount of STUFF it takes running her household, not to mention the seven or eight employees they have to take care of everything. But of course, she is well aware of an observation I made too: the more people you have working on something in Cuba, the less you end up getting done. It's a fun read, written from an American's perspective, and I can't help feeling almost vindicated reading it--"ah, I hate that too!" "yeah, that always drives me crazy when..." In any case, I highly recommend it to anyone who wants an entertaining American's perspective on living here.