In 1925, Mella was expelled from the University after he and fellow students forcibly took over the university and made demands including modernizing text books and free education for all. After being accused of a bomb plot, Mella was expelled from the University for this “radical”, political involvement. Once freed from jail, Mella fled to Mexico, where he was assassinated under suspicious circumstances just a few years later, in 1929, at just 26 years old.
Cuba’s Malecon, which means “pier”, was exactly what it was supped to be: A chill spot. Similar to El Malecon in the Dominican Republic, the island makes a great use of it’s coastline, making it a popular hangout spot for people of all ages. Littered with restaurants and hotels, this is definitely a tourist friendly spot – especially since it’s one of the few places you can get free, public wifi.
While I’m sure everyone was there for the wifi, I was taken aback by the majesty of the island. Many of the buildings are going through cosmetic renovations, but the architecture is amazing. There are war hero monuments everywhere, emitting an inescapable sense of pride. The pastel paints cover buildings, provide a contrasting, very calm mood. The ocean? It was magnificent. Since I visited in October, hurricane season, the deep blues waves crashed against the shore, with more power than violence, as it to beg you to respect it, not fear it. My mood was either influenced by the island, or by reading Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea while I was there. I would beg that both Hemingway and myself saw the beauty and glory of the island.