Trip Start Jan 16, 2007
51Trip End Mar 01, 2007
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Just a few blocks east is the University of Habana, a beautiful verdant campus of Corinthian columns and banyans trees. There are several good museums here, but we elect to visit the Napoleonic museum just off campus. My parents experience the confusion of Cuban direction-giving first hand, as a guard at the university begins pointing us in the totally wrong direction before a passing old woman mutters something under her breath (did she call him an old goat!?) and directs us with great accuracy.
Housed in a resplendent Italianate mansion, the collection of vases, paintings, ceramics, furniture and monographs is comprehensively puzzling
We flag a cab down and head south east, past the Necropolis -- it's too hot already for a trip through this huge cemetery -- to Parque Almendes for lunch. The El Lugar restaurant boasts a great riverside setting, an excellent trio and seemingly fine food. But they try to blatantly overcharge us and have another hidden surprise. Two hours later as Lucy greets her Grandma Rosemary, freshly arrived from Canada, she annouces "I feel barfy," and vomits. I also don't feel well, and I shared some of my prawns with Lucy. Is it psychosomatic? This is Julie and Rosemary's take, but no, my nausea increases and as Lucy upchucks her stomach, I swap off with her in the bathroom for squats on the toilet.
Even after Lucy is vomiting only bile, she can't stop. We try giving her a mouthful of water. Nothing stays down. This continues for hours. Poor Rosemary spends her first day in Cuba a hostage in her own hotel room. In the end, the hotel doctor gives Lucy an injection of some Gravol-like substance and we stagger out of the hotel and across the street to our own room.