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Extra resources for Barak Obama, 44th President of the United States (2008)
It’s really the ultimate Cuban party, which means that everyone goes to work or school during the daytime but as soon as the sun sets you come out again, dressed in your Sunday best, to join in the fun. The main streets are closed off to traffic for the duration, and for weeks beforehand dozens of temporary stalls are built along the streets to sell beer, rum and food—and no rationing. indd 47 29/3/06 1:15:27 PM a little too capitalist, but no one is complaining. Even Fidel says Cubans should enjoy the carnival.
Because all of a sudden, Cuba has turned away from the United States, the country that has been both its closest neighbour and its interfering protector, and embraced powerful new friends from the other side of the world: the Russians. If I were older I would understand exactly what’s going on. You can see it in the old newsreels: Fidel, wearing his olive green uniform and his beard, towering over a funny-looking little man with a trimmed moustache whose name is Anastas Mikoyan. And Mikoyan, who is supposed to be a powerful man in Moscow, hugs Fidel and then tries to give him a kiss—that’s right, he tries to give Fidel a kiss, which may be all right in Russia but is not a very Cuban thing to do, everyone says.
And she fears this one is going to be as bad as Flora. She thinks all cyclones are as bad as Flora. So, don’t tell her about cyclones and don’t tell her about not needing to panic, and don’t tell her about how it will all be okay because she knows what a cyclone can do. It’s been decided that we are going to the family house on Presidente Zayas Avenue because that house is bigger and stronger than where we live and it is also in a higher area of otherwise dead-flat Banes. My mother runs around packing clothes for my brother and me and raiding the kitchen cabinets looking for whatever is there that can be taken with us.