Before we arrived in Trinidad I was expecting amazing things, having read up on the place in the guide book and also after speaking to my parents who went to Cuba last October. The third largest city in Cuba, old preserved Spanish Colonial squares and breathtaking white sand beaches. I imagined Trinidad to be grand and beautiful and to be able to see the coast from the city. Oh, how wrong I was! To be honest, I was a little disappointed with Trinidad as a city. Yes, it was nice but it was nothing special. It was very much like all the other places we saw/were yet to see in Cuba.
When we arrived, we were introduced to our Casa owner ‘Jesus’ (pronounced ye-soos, but there was a running joke) and he was great, very friendly. We even got a welcome ‘canchánchara’ – a cocktail made from rum, honey, lemon and water. We then headed of for the promised orientation walk around the main square area, and then up to Taverna la Canchánchara which is a place known for the cocktail and some music. We didn’t stay long and headed to Case de la Música, also known as ‘the steps’. We then headed back for an amazing buffet dinner back at the Casa – there was so much food! It was great.
Then it was back out to ‘the steps’ and the atmosphere was phenomenal! The music, the crowds, the lighting – it was incredible. What really made the atmosphere was the area in front of the stage where people were just dancing, completely impromptu. It was mesmerising to watch – the salsa, the dancing the music. Fantastic.
Our guide, Dio, even tried to teach us a few basic salsa moves. I could not get it..I could do the steps really slowly, but as soon as I had to follow the beat of the music I was lost! Brought me back to my instrument playing days..my timing and rhythm was never good back then either! It was nice though, as a group we got up and started to learn together in this amazing atmosphere.
We spent most of the night here, and then we felt a few drops of rain. We didn’t think anything of it, but we really should have! When it rains, it really rains..it started to drizzle a bit but by the time we got our act together to leave it was chucking it down. We managed to make our way back to the Casa in the rain and my god it was cold! I always expected tropical rain to at least be warm..though having said that rain in a summer dress I don’t think I would have survived English rain in that! It was definitely an experience, despite arriving back literally wet to the skin.