We saw buildings that were disintegrating and some that were being restored, and everything in between. It’s a powerful metaphor for life itself: if we don’t put an effort into maintenance and growth, everything eventually falls apart. When we lack resources or a sense of ownership or hope, that maintenance is neglected. It can be a huge source of energy to begin and complete the restoration process. Cubans hope their rebuilding process can be accelerated with the restoration of US-Cuban relations and new investment. Time will tell.
One of the more intriguing aspects of this process in Cuba is that on some of the public buildings they leave a section in its original condition, as a window of authenticity, to show that this is truly an old building. It reminds me of the old saying: Don’t judge a book by its cover. There is so much more to be revealed by continuing to explore.