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About chris12381

  • Birthday 01/23/1981

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    Cuba, cigars, rum, flying, skiing...

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  1. My mom lives in a condo in FL. About half of the place smokes. Some chowder head moved in about 2 years ago from Connecticut and got the HOA to pass a total ban on smoking. Even on balconies. My mom is 71, who occasionally pilfers a cigar from my coolers I keep at her place for long term aging, is a non-smoker. However, the day they passed the ban at her condo, she went to the convenience store and bought several cartons of cigarettes. Every night, she goes out on her balcony, lights it like a stick of incense, places it down in the ashtray and goes back inside. Doesn't take a single puff. Just makes sure the new neighbor knows someone is always flouting her ban. Found out today she'd convinced 5 others in the building to do the same thing. They've been "smoking" every night for the past 2 years too.
  2. They are just down the road from me. My town (San Mateo) actually already has this ordinance and includes duplexes but not single family homes. They also have banned all smoking in public. Public meaning city streets and sidewalks. That even includes the sidewalk in front of my home. Now, I have been walking my dog every day since this ordinance was enacted 7 years ago. I walk 2 miles along the sidewalk and through a city park. Only one old nasty man (from inside his home!) has ever said anything and started screaming at me, threatening hurt my dog, demanded I walk elsewhere, recorded the who thing and even started leaving crazy notes for me to read every time I walked by. He then started calling the police on me every time I walked by. I was polite to the officers, I explained what had been happening and how he was demanding I not use the public sidewalk and was threatening to hurt my dog. Initially, one officer suggested that I consider doing that but I made it clear I would not be responding to his threats by backing down. The other officers agreed. I told them all I do is walk my dog, enjoy my cigar and go home. The police mentioned the ordinance about smoking but they had no interest in enforcing it as a call out. That was a year ago.
  3. I think prices are going to be the tip of the iceberg when it comes to what shocks many when they return to Cuba. Everyone I have spoken to in the past few months has said they have passed the "Special Period" when it comes to scarcity of food, medicine, fuel, household items, lines forming at 4 and 5 AM, etc. For those lucky enough to have $$$ and pay someone to wait in line for doesn't much matter since there's often nothing to buy. Un tremendo cagazón. @Ryan, I did read in another thread you were heading there soon. You going to be there on the 15th of November?
  4. I smoke those cigars, drink that rum and visit that country whenever I want. Not sure what he's talking about... 🤷🏼 When it comes to their hotels...Just say ño.
  5. Article dated September 5th in Granma...the Official Body of the Central Committee of the Communist Party in Cuba! I gave it a rough translation into English, with the link to the original article below. Abrirán gradualmente las fronteras de Cuba a partir del 15 de noviembre Teniendo en cuenta el avance en el proceso de vacunación en Cuba, su efectividad demostrada y la perspectiva de que más del 90 % de toda la población concluirá los calendarios de vacunación en noviembre; se preparan las condiciones para abrir, gradualmente, las fronteras del país a partir del 15 de noviembre de 2021. Según nota del Ministerio de Turismo enviada a nuestra redacción, se flexibilizarán los protocolos higiénico-sanitarios a la llegada de los viajeros, los cuales estarán centrados en la vigilancia de pacientes sintomáticos y la toma de temperatura. Además, se realizarán pruebas diagnósticas de manera aleatoria, no se exigirá el PCR al arribo y se reconocerá el certificado de vacunación de los viajeros. También se iniciará la apertura del mercado interno turístico de manera gradual, en correspondencia con los indicadores epidemiológicos de cada territorio. Cuba to begin gradually opening its borders as of November 15th Taking into account the advance of the progress of the vaccination in Cuba, its demonstrated effectiveness and the fact that more than 90% of the entire population will conclude the vaccination schedules in November; Conditions are being prepared to gradually open the country's borders as of November 15, 2021. According to a note from the Ministry of Tourism sent to our newsroom, the hygienic-sanitary protocols will be adjusted for the arrival of travelers. They will now be focused on monitoring symptomatic patients and taking temperature. In addition, diagnostic tests will be carried out at random, PCR will not be required upon arrival and the travelers' vaccination certificate will be recognized. The opening of the domestic tourist market will also begin gradually, in correspondence with the epidemiological indicators of each territory. As of today, I don't see any significant flights available from the US to Havana. However if this change is implimented, especially before the Thanksgiving/Christmas holidays...there's gonna be an air bridge.
  6. It's pretty simple. They spend all their treasure on development of vaccine instead of food production or other basic necessities that we just take for granted. A tropical island with so much land that imports most of its food. WTF! But as far as the efficacy of the Cuban vaccine goes, I was on a Signal video call with a friend's mom a few days ago. She had just had her 3rd dose and had a low grade fever, aches, runny nose, pains and chills 24 hours after and was fine the following day. Similar symptoms I had after the 2nd dose of the Pfizer vaccine. The difference is she didn't have access to any NSAIDs, decongestants, etc. Even the pharmacies in the hotels were empty.
  7. Found this on Twitter via Project Inventario @invntario They've been compiling the dates and locations of all the protests and corrobrating them with video and photos. Here's a link to their Google Map. Manifestaciones en Cuba, domingo 11 de julio 2021 One of the issues they are dealing with is placing the photos and video with the correct dates since a lot of dropped well after the protest occured - when ETECSA turned data back on. So each mark on the map is only placed once they have actual evidene that it occured at a specific date and time. They have also been doing some pretty impressive OSINT to place some videos. As one example: Este video que circula desde ayer en #rrss como una manifestación ocurrida el 17 And asking for help...and getting it:
  8. I was traveling by train from Providence to Boston with friends for a birthday celebration. The conductor welcomed me and my friends aboard and when we pulled out of the station, announced to the whole train that there was a birthday celebration had joined the train. At some point, an older gentleman came up to me, asked if I was the "birthday boy", wished me good health and gave me a congratulatory birthday cigar. This was the first cigar I would ever smoke. When we got home, I asked my dad if it was OK for me to smoke it. He said it was fine, gave me matches and the same ashtray his father used when he smoked his cigars. I don't believe I lasted more than four puffs.
  9. As @Nino pointed out in earlier comments when he mentioned the Eastern Bloc countries, these guys are key to how these fights are won. With enough people protesting and in the street, it is not unlikely that a portion of those that have the power (the guns) start to realize that they too are hungry, they too have family who can't get medicine, they too go home to dark houses, etc. In other words, they are not any different from those they are fighting...and are fighting for something that isn't worth fighting for. They might not want to see the massive changes many envision: But they know they don't want more of the same. If that begins to acabó.
  10. From what I could find out, these videos were recorded yesterday. No idea on location. To me, these look like MIG-21 and the helicopter looks like a MIL Mi-17 or newer. Someone with better knowledge of Soviet era helicopters might know better as to what it is. Hopefully just a show of force.
  11. Thanks for pointing out his channel. Alain Lambert has done amazing work for years. He was one of the first people I ever saw live-streaming in Cuba (all the way back in 2016 and 2017). I've been a fan for some time. Anytime a celebriety came to Cuba, there he was following them and filming it and usually got a chance to ask them a question or two. He would travel outside of Havana to as far as Santiago to film the Carnival (where he got arrested during a live stream), Christmas in Remedios, etc. He was filming and livestreaming during hurricane Irma. He then started meeting average Cubans on the street and asking them to show his audience what their homes were like and how they lived. Some of what he he saw was incredibly emmotional and seemed to affect Alain quite a bit. I don't think this reporting and his commentary went over well with his government. If you go back into his videos about 8 to 6 months ago, you will see a video he streamed live inside an aircraft cabin on the ramp in Havana where he said he needed to quickly sell everything he had and leave Cuba for Panama. He's been there since then.
  12. You forgot Romania... 🤭 Their full written statement was a real treat to read. My "favorite" part comes before the quote you have there. It was probably ommitted because the Cubans found it insulting and everyone found it just so...well, read for yourself. "This cruel and inhumane policy, instituted with the explicit intention of destabilizing the country and undermining Cubans' right to choose their own government, is at the heart of Cuba's current crisis." Well that's a new one. I've always been told by certain Cubans that they DO get to choose their own government. They vote for their elected officials just like other countries do. The mere fact that it's a one party system (and all other parties are banned) has nothing at all to do with the embargo. That's how their system works. Por Dios...🤦🏼‍♂️
  13. I don't know what blame one could assess on the US for import tariffs on food and medicine. If it was somehow punitive, they would assess it only on those passengers entering from the US when in fact, everyone pays it regardless of country of departure. It is, as you said, a profit making venture. Agreed. It is the equivalent of pissing on a forest fire.
  14. Cuban leadership just announced during their "Mesa Redonda" this evening that it will allow unlimited importation of food, hygiene products and medicine via passenger flights w/ no tariffs (import duties) through December 31st of this year. I should point out there was no mention of lifting the restrictions on the number of flights from countries they previously identified as being COVID risks. 🤔

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