THIS CITY on Exposure | Jonathan Wilson

By | October 23, 2014

I haven’t put very large dent in my travel bucket list, but Havana, Cuba was most definitely on it. Living in Miami for the last 8 years, I went in with expectations in my head, most of which didn’t align with what I experienced in my short stay.Finally after a few false alarms myself, Dillon Hearns, Conall Keenan, John Mahoney and Matt Sosna joined a group from Amigo Skate. We loaded up our bikes, snorks and heavy bags of parts to help keep BMX and skateboarding alive in Cuba. All of the travel details of how this trip came to be are confusing and long winded. Travel to Cuba is somehow simple and complicated. Weight limits on all luggage. Exchanging money – US Dollars -> Euro -> Cuban Convertible Currency (CUC) to avoid the additional taxes. Having no phones once there. Questions from the TSA, German Shepherds before getting on the plane…The hours before takeoff were intense, I didn’t really believe I was going to Cuba directly from Miami until the plane was in the air.Somehow a 30 minute flight became spending half the day in both MIA and HAV airports. Finally we made through the excruciating moments of waiting for our bikes and the damage they may have incurred. Finally we made it to the exterior of José Martí International Airport, I was hit with what I could only described and some kind of sensory overload. Typically when I land at an airport I scatter to a tram or my motorcycle and I’m off. In Havana we were greeted by a few hundred locals, taxi drivers and assorted characters. It was surreal.

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