When the American ships arrived, they looked like giant white women swimming towards us on the horizon. American marines shouted orders from the crooks of the ships’ pale elbows, readied guns in the corner of vicious smiles. I was pushing Pablito’s stroller on el Malecón, and the people around me said, Look, what is that? But I knew. I had seen them before, decades ago in the first invasion.
There is a lot to talk about when I call my father in India from Cuba. The calls are expensive, but the connection is crystalline. Nonetheless, it is hard to stay focused when my consciousness ping-pongs between a Malayali courtyard and the passage way of a Havana apartment building.
I entered my Havana apartment and was pleasantly surprised to find that the Cuban boyfriend had already turned one of the four available channels to the Jimmy Carter press conference. It was the statesman’s second visit to Cuba; the first was in 2002.