September again

August left us exhausted, after a very wet June and a blisteringly hot July, The power consumption rises and in order to sleep we lie in front of the fan that lulls us, throughout the night, with its hum. The heat brings on intolerance and critics arise on every corner. Those “from up there” know this well and they also fear the eighth month of the year. Because of this they open kiosks with cheap rum in the most populated neighborhoods and avoid cutting off the electricity in the troubled areas of the city. In any event, the tension is palpable in the air, not only because of the temperature but because of the crisis that aggravated the fears and hardships. I have been counting the days until the end of August, hoping that with its end we will also find some relief.

With this feeling of fullness September started with its routines. My son left early for school and mid-morning I asked myself the same question as last year, how to find something to take him for lunch. The teacher announced that those mobilized at the schools in the countryside will return. I assume this is happening because the countryside boarding schools are gradually disappearing, and now the classrooms will have forty students because there are not enough teachers. Public transport is also more complicated for a couple of days while all the students and workers return from their vacations. Fortunately, no hurricane has hit at the beginning of the month, as Ike and Gustav did a year ago.

All the postponed projects should be launched this September, including those new measures announced, but not accomplished, during the last session of the National Assembly. Our politicians should apply themselves like our students, sharpening the points of their pencils, drawing lines in their notebooks, and setting to work to find solutions to the mountain of problems surrounding us. It’s too bad they know ahead of time that they won’t have to sit for tests, that they won’t be graded as poor, average or good, with a vote left in the ballot box. What a pity that we can’t take the red pencil of disapproval and make a huge X on their term paper about their administrative management. So, they have promoted themselves year after year, starting each September in a class from which no one has the right to suspend them.

* September has also brought me some surprises. Since last Friday it is impossible to connected to Voces Cubanas from the Island. They have applied to it the same slow filter they use to block the connection to for users in Cuba with very slow speed Internet connections.


18 thoughts on “September again

  1. Following a botched colonoscopy, the legendary Fidel Castro suffers ten explosive nightmares.

    In spite of the advances of satellite neuro-technological espionage, which now enable the CIA to unveil the most clandestine thoughts of the worst enemies of the United States, Fidel defeats U.S. President Obama during his dreams.

    In these ten short stories, each of about 14,700 words, Fidel is punished by God because of his gluttony and is entrapped within his owns guts, reincarnating, in a way, the Prometheus myth.

    During his endless agony, his alcoholic brother Raul grasps power, ten million Cubans abandon the country, the island becomes an alligator and swims to Miami, and Fidel, the commander, passes away.

    Finally, thanks to the lobbying of his Jesuit and Mason friends in heaven, all of the celestial inhabitants demand Fidel’s canonization or, at the very least, his recognition as the Patron Saint of Gastrointestinal Illnesses.

    (From “NIGHTMARES OF FIDEL” book published by Xlibris. See excerpt at:

  2. Pingback: Iowa Tea Party Patriots Blog » The same but different

  3. The government authorizes the sale of one uniform when the child begins schooling, and more thereafter, but not every year, under the rationing plan. So one uniform per student.

    Yet at the beginning of the school year, students and parents are told, in no uncertain terms, how grateful they should be to the Revolution for the education they are about to receive.

  4. My dear friends!!!,,don’t be naive,,,don’s be so idealistic !!!!!

    Castro and his mafia, gang will use any excuse!!!!,,,,any kind!!!! does not matter,,,they don’t have dignity, and much less, they don’t care about Cuba’s population, that is why, if the “All World” and I mean it,,,,the “All World”,,, opens it doors, to facilitate the use of Internet, or any kind or mass way of communications , for free!!!!, as a gift!!!! , as a donation!!!! , etc, etc,,,the regime, the Castros and their mafia gang, will be coming out saying, using, inventing!!!!! any excuse to limit and prohibit, those new ways of communication to restrict the use of it by the Cuban people.

    As long as the Castros are in power,,,,never ever!!!!,,,never ever!!!!will be freedom of speech, freedom of communication,,,,because, that will be the end of that cruel and sanguinary system,,,they know that,,,they know that allowing the freedom of communication, it will be able to reveal a lot of information that can be used by the Cubans as a comparison factor, then, the people can wake up from that long lethargy and it will be a disaster for those mafia men and their Capos!!!!.

    Some excuses could be :

    1-Imposing enormous prices or taxes to use it, or to buy it , equipments/system like computers, cameras, videos, etc, etc,,,, it will be created BY LAWS, to insured the legal procedures to be able to take action against the violator, who will be ending in jail, just, because he was using the Internet seen some biography in Wikipedia!!!! (seen “Che” Guevara’s biography will represent a medal!!!!, seen a Gandhi’s biography will represent 25 years in jail,,,even, if the reader just want to claim his freedom using pacific ways!!!!)

    2-Monitoring the way the people is using the Internet, because, like that, every Cuban will know , that any minute using the Internet , will be a minute where somebody, some Government “dog”, etc, will be alert, watching and listening, but that procedure will be something “almost openly public”,,,,,some kind of “open secret”, that inoculated the fear in their blood !!!!!, then, the people will be self-restrained to avoid the repression!!!!!

    3-The same examples and answers, that Castro used to reject the help after those hurricanes that did destroy Pinar del Rio last year, without any care or any notion about the suffering of those persons, will be the same kind of excuses, that he will use to avoid, to prohibit, to limit, etc, etc, the implementation and use of the free Internet en Cuba.

    4-The deficit of telephone service in Cuba is so big, let say that, for example, in Havana- the Capital of the country- where supposedly it should be the city with more quantities of telephones per person, we have two or three telephones per street, in other words, we are talking about that one street could get 100 houses, and considering 4 persons per house (average) it will be 400 persons using 2-3 telephones,,,and to get a telephone line is something essential to be connected to the Internet ,and I’m saying “under normal and legals conditions”,,,,not using illegal ways or tricks to escape the vigilance of the Police!!!!.

    The list of excuses, could be without limits, exactly as the last 50 years which have been, without limits for the repression, the cruelty and to do whatever they want to do, they can use since diplomatic words until the most cruel thread, they don’t care,,,they believe that “the end justifies the means”!!!!!,,,they will do anything in their power to avoid it,,,,,,1000000000000000% granted!!!!!


  5. Cuba’s snail-pace internet will soon be a thing of the past, according to the BBC:
    “In business, US telecommunications are now exempt from the general US trade embargo – in place against Cuba for five decades – and can now provide fibre optic internet connections and mobile phone roaming services. Phone bills can also be paid by relatives in the US.”
    I’m sure the Castro’s, always complaining about the embargo, will embrace this with alacrity!

  6. Hey, thanks for alerting me to Octavo Cerco being down. When I went over there to see the English site was fine, though the Spanish site was just showing one entry and no sidebar… but I hadn’t backed up in a while so I took the chance to do that… We have multiple people backing everything up… so even if he trolls manage to crash it… we’ll get it back!

    Your Friendly English Translator

  7. To John Bibb- No, Snr. That is how it’s done on Fantasy Island. I always laugh here in the States when I tell my electrician friends that they can’t possibly go to Cuba- they would have a heart attack seeing the mess. Likewise you have to be careful about the first visit to Home Depot with a recent arrival for the same reason. I long for a car ferry from Key West, although I admit I am jealous to share. When the Million Americans arrive it will be changed forever, but for the good of the average citizen, not just the Pinchons although them as well. What are you gonna do?

  8. Yoanni. you are Beautiful. You say so much utilizing so few words. I won’t go on for fear of profaning your gift of the short.Bless you, and we are all watching.

  9. Yoani:

    Usuarios en Cuba que tienen bloqueado acceso a Voces Cubanas se sentiran muy separados unos de otros, sin noticias y ansiosos.
    Ahora bien, seria relativamente facil para nosotros, fuera de Cuba,obtener acceso a Voces Cubanas, copiar su contenido y enviarlos por e-mail. Con el numero de personas que como yo, leen asiduamente tus comentarios, podrian designar a cada uno de nosotros, una direccion de e-mail en Cuba donde voluntariamente te ayudariamos a diseminar Voces Cubanas.
    Cada persona en el exterior se comprometeria voluntariamente a enviar a su correponsal en la Isla, uno por uno, los ultimos comentarios.
    Por razones obvias, no hay necesidad de poner en las manos de un desconocido en el exterior, mas de una direccion e-mail en Cuba.
    Si algo como esto fuera de ayuda, seria un privilegio para mi, ser el primero en recibir una direcion a la cual enviar vuestros comentarios.

    Con gran admiracion,

    Conrado Domingue
    San Mateo,CA

  10. The Education in Cuba is under the absolute control of the Communist party, and begin in elementary school with the so-called “Cumulative School File.” It measures “revolutionary integration,” not only of the student but also of his family. This file documents whether or not the child and family participate in mass demonstrations, or whether they belong to a church or religious group. His university options will depend on what that file says. If he does not conform to the regime indoctrination, he will be denied many career possibilities.

  11. La barba y el barbero.

    Presidente Brasilenho -Lula, “El Barbudo”, carga en su cuerpo una hernia de disco adquirirse tanto a doblar la columna vertebral a Hugo Chávez, durante ocho años en el cargo. Tomará también marcó en su paleta de ser uno de los mayores impulsores para el aplastamiento de uno de los países más pobres en América Latina, Honduras, sólo para hacer lo que más le gusta: para doblar la columna vertebral a las imposiciones de Hugo Chávez. Hoy en día los Estados Unidos, presionado por la República Bolivariana de todo tipo, cortar la ayuda económica para el país, que vive en un clima de elecciones democráticas y libres para elegir un nuevo presidente. ESTA VEZ, BRASIL SE HA ALINEADO CON LOS NORTEAMERICANOS. UNO DE DIPLOMACIA REPRESALIA DE PT Y DE LA CANCELACIÓN DE UN PROGRAMA PARA LA ERRADICACIÓN DE CHAGAS, PROVENIENTES DE SALVAR LA VIDA DE CIENTOS DE HONDUREÑOS. UN DIGNO REVENGE OF EVIL DE LULA. El barbudo lanzó el “barbero” – el mosquito (o bug) propagador de la enfermedad – libre para empujar al pueblo hondureño, porque es un pueblo que ama y apoya la democracia. Y que no se dobla la columna vertebral, como él, Hugo Chávez.

  12. Dear Translator,
    You are very welcome, but you make the sentence even better..BTW Octavo Cerco is down…

  13. Su English Translator is ENORMOUSLY grateful! After reading Gabi’s comment I realized I’d skipped a whole phrase… but hadn’t gotten the moment to fix it… and then along comes Concubino and solves it for me!!!!!

    Muchisimas gracias a both of you!!!!

    Your Friendly–and Grateful–English Translator

  14. Are there any measures these clowns have accomplished in the last forty years that have been completed successfully and with a beneficial outcome? I can’t think of one.

    Each time they’re at bat, each of the brother’s strike out with the so called measures or projects. Meantime, the people or spectators in the grand stand remain silent, exhausted and depressed. But why do certain segments of the international audience – let’s called them fans of the regime – clap so energetically despite the perfect strike-out record and poor performance? Education and health care, they cite as indicators of success.

    Although I have no better access to information than the average Parisian sipping latte at an outdoor cafe, it is obvious to me that success in the fields of education and health care is a fallacy. Let’s take a look at each one using readily available internet material, one at a time:

    Education: What good is education if doctors, engineers, professors, you name it, end up driving taxis and working as baggage handlers at Spanish owned hotels? And trust me, from what I’ve read and seen, the foreign management of these enterprises get goose bumps when an overqualified professional walks in and applies for a reception clerk job. They get highly educated labor, who can do math, speak clearly and with good presentation, who are paid a pittance.

    But this is the least of the problems. The fact that so much overqualified labor is being used for what are basically unskilled or semi-skilled jobs, means that the whole economy is distorted and lacking in any efficiency or production capability – i.e. agronomists driving taxis, engineers serving as butlers, doctors changing sheets, etc, the whole thing is insane.

    Meantime, and worse of all, as a consequence of this chaos, the rest of the population at the other end of the scale, lacking direction, good management and good science, not to mention inability to start their own businesses, are unable to fend for themselves. Consequently they get to eat dirt and as Yoani mentions, drink cheap rum once in a while in order to forget their sorrows.

    Healthcare: If the care of individuals is so good, why then are relatives forever asking for medicines and vitamin supplements (not to mention money to buy them on the black market) on a monthly basis. I’ve seen pictures of seventy year old Cuban-American visitors to Cuba who look twenty years younger than their brothers and cousins in their fifties, who live on the island.

    So much for the two greatest accomplishments of the robolution.

  15. Gabi,
    Hope this makes a little more sense to you and others. Hope that our Dear and Friendly translator does not mind..

    “La maestra les anunció que volverán las movilizaciones al campo –en compensación, me imagino, a la paulatina extinción de las becas- y que ahora las aulas tendrán cuarenta alumnos pues no hay suficientes profesores”.

    The teacher announced that those mobilized at the schools in the countryside will return. I assume this is happening because the schools who were in the countryside before(boarding schools)are despairing gradually, and now the classrooms will have forty students because there are not enough teachers.

  16. ***
    I hope those are phone and video circuits on the pole. If they are electric power wires the fires will start soon.
    Ojala que son circuitos de telephono y video sobre el palo. Si son de corriente electrica los incendios van a empezar pronto.
    John Bibb

  17. Hi,

    you made a misstak in your translation:
    This sentence of Yoani
    “La maestra les anunció que volverán las movilizaciones al campo –en compensación, me imagino, a la paulatina extinción de las becas- y que ahora las aulas tendrán cuarenta alumnos pues no hay suficientes profesores”.

    does not mean what you wrote:

    The teacher announced that those mobilized at the schools in the countryside will return, over the gradual extinction of that program, and now the classrooms will have forty students because there are not enough teachers.

    Please correct

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