Avoiding the insulated bubble of air-conditioned tour busses highlighting only those places the government wishes visitors to see, enabled me to share some intimate facets of everyday Cuban life. However, I was always aware of the invisible barrier between me and some of the local people that I met along the way. This was created, in part, by their guarded conversations and by the fact that I was forbidden to visit certain locations.
Ironically, this barrier enabled me to learn more about Cuba by simply observing. The strength and perseverance of its people is evident everywhere; in the continuous state of grace of the crumbling buildings that house them and the many hours they spend repairing them. The constant movement in the streets and the steady chatter wafting down from the balconies attest to the inherent sociability of these people. Yet long narrow staircases leading to the tops of buildings tell of a quieter life lived by some.
My series, Beyond the Postcard, gives you a peek behind what a typical tourist might expect to see, and reveals, in its myriad of details, fragments of the complex reality of the Cuba that I came to know.