Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The Cuban Cigar I turned down

Doing my thing today that I do to earn the greenbacks, and no, I am not talking about either golfing, OR writing on my blog. I am talking about the whole insurance adjusting thing. I met with an Elderly Cuban Fellow. So far, most Latin Americans I have met speak English as well as Spanish. There are some exceptions here and there. The Hot Dog stand lady is one. The Cuban lady whose house I was in the day Fidel stepped down is another , and today the fellow I met had very limited English skills although he did end up telling me he has lived in America for 31 years through an interpreter.
I find that whole dynamic of trying to communicate with people who don't speak English absolutely fascinating. I don't know a damn bit of Spanish and he didn't know hardly any English. We ended up engaging a friend of his who was bilingual, and for the hour or so that I was there, the three of us communicated and figured out what it was that we needed to get done. In the end, the older fellow that I was there to see offered to bring me back some Cigars from Cuba. (he was planning on going there for the first time in over 10 years, next week) I declined, as it is against company policy to take Gifts from clients and I thought about it and losing my job over a Cuban Cigar just seemed kind of stupid.
It did make me think though. A long time ago I had a Cuban Cigar. It was good, although it wasn't magical or anything. I think the Cuban Cigar gets its Status from the embargo. If America gave up on that policy, people would realize that although a Cuban Cigar is good, it is not any better then a 12 dollar Macunudo or a Dominican.
I also asked him what he did for a living while here for 31 years without being able to speak English. He was a cabinet maker. he was a good man, I could tell. I liked him. There was something about him that shined through and even though we had our difficulty communicating I could tell he was a decent and solid fellow. He loved America that's for damn sure. It makes you understand how cool of a place this is. I love that about Miami....


Brian in Mpls said...

I agree Cubans tend to be highly overrated.

I usually get the opposite,...Damn you turned out to be a good son-of-a-bith after all.

PS I think am going to take a few months off next year and head down to Costa Rica to learn spanish let me know if you are in.

PhoenixHearse said...

I wonder if there is anything else from Cuba that people get so bent out of shape to have.

Like, do you think anyone is just itching for a Cuban scarf? Or cheeseburger?

The Charming Hedonist said...

Yeah, 31 years in this country and not a lick of english? He may be a great guy, but that just pisses me off.

The Charming Hedonist said...
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Bill From Gainesville said...

Brian, I would SOOO be in on a Costa Rica Trip but realistically I think I could probably only get away with it for a long weekend
Phoenix -- its basic Economics People covet rare stuff, thats why Diamonds are so popular and gravel is just, well, gravel--- on Some planet far away a guy is proposing to his girlfriend with a 1 carat piece of Gravel because on that planet Diamonds are like sand on the worlds beaches.
Hedo. I gotcha on the sentiment, however he carved out a little Niche by being a skilled craftsman Made his Dough by his hands and only hung out with other spanish speakers.. he is rare but he is also alot like Frank Sinatra just doing it his way....