Saturday, May 2, 2009

Cuba a Bittersweet Tale - Part VI

Everyday as we sat in Abuelo's home I had the opportunity to view many acts of kindness. One day a neighbor came by and kissed all the family on the cheek and then proceeded to give Abuelo and Berty a hair cut. No money was exchanged, just a cut and conversation. Then she left. Luis who took Dad and I everywhere came by and gave Berty a shave on the patio.

And then there is Rosa who has spent many years taking care of Abuelo and Berty, cooking, cleaning and just being a care giver to our family, extraordinarly kind.

Abuelo who struggled to get up from the pain he was enduring and settle in his chair.
Dad sitting down to converse with Abuelo, read a letter together, attempting to explain the last 40 years of his life. How do you do that in 2 weeks. Craziness. These are the portraits from those days that I just sat and watched these interchanges.

The innocence of children when there are no video games, TV, cell phones, text messaging is truly amazing. These kids would play baseball in the pouring rain, and I mean a torrential downpour, then they'd get a donkey pulled cart and ride around the block.
And then the innocense changes, as soon as I snapped this photograph I walked back into my grandfather's house. Out of no where one of these little boys came flying in the house and grabbed my camera, it was so lightening fast I didn't have time to react, however everyone else did, and I never let my camera down again, no matter where I was.

One thing I learned about myself, and any future photography career I wanted to have is that I am not cut out for photo journalism. On one of these observation days I was standing on the porch, this kid walked by a neighbor's house on is way home. Apparently he owed them some money for something, but didn't pay up. This was two teenagers arguing at a door. But then this older man with a huge belly and no shirt comes out and starts yelling at this kid, who knows what, the dialog was too fast. Then this kid walks away and grabs a brick. He takes the brick and runs up to this older mand and slams the guy in the head. Blood starts coming out profusely, down his face and large tanned belly. Everyone now jumps in to stop this situation, kids and adults a like. All this happened right in front of me and was incredibly violent, I went to snap a picture and then froze, I got scared as everyone was extremely edgy. Dad pulled me in the house and a never got a photo of the incident, but it's seared into my mind and that solidfied my non-existent photo journalism career, left to a life as a part-time blogger.

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