Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid

Havana, Cuba.

Where the buildings look Peruvian and Italian, the music sounds Jamaican and Spanish, the weather feels Hawaiian and Brazilian, and the cars look, well, American.

Havana is, if anything, the most original and one-of-a-kind place you could ever be lucky enough to visit.

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Back in October of 2016, I saw a sale for flights on the Flight Deal from LA to Havana from LAX, and I’ve never shelled out $300 so quickly. The flights were for January of 2017, meaning we would be among the first to legally travel from the US to Cuba.

Even with four months to study up and plan an itinerary, I was wildly unprepared for what lay ahead. I’ll have more detailed posts in the future, but for now: thoughts.

It’s pretty and dirty and friendly and loud and confusing — so. damn. confusing.

It’s wonderfully diverse, from the locals that reside there to the tourists that visit. The only distinction is the signature glassy-eyed looks that follow tourists wherever they go; the cameras around the neck don’t help either.

Oh, me? Guilty on both accounts. Especially the glassy-eyed look.

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

There’s music and dancing at every turn, and whether that’s the people to the palm trees, it doesn’t matter. It happens with an acoustic guitar and a frisky salsa dancer who moves their feet faster than I can even clap my hands.

There are pathways leading you from Habana Vieja to Centro Habana, and even then to the sea.

The city is both crumbling and rebuilding, and even the ugly is beautiful. Wish I could say the same for photos of me in sixth grade.

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

Bienvenida a Havana, Cuba: The Hybrid -- The Living Emoji

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Julia Jean Kennedy

Julia Jean Kennedy

Preferring basketball over barbies, travel over tutus, and almost any chatter that could somehow relate back to Harry Potter, Julia is always game for a beer and an impromptu booking of a ticket to a game, country, or even the latest Fast and Furious movie. Here, find random thoughts, tidbits about trips, and occasionally Seattle Seahawks propaganda.

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