Cuba's Secret Side
The Truth Revealed
Sunday, Feb 15, 5 p.m. on Vermont PBS Plus
The Truth Revealed looks beyond the politics and propaganda at the Cubans themselves. People like Adolpho, a tobacco farmer who had open-heart surgery ten years ago and still tends his fields. Or Marco, who walks for miles each day, his operatic voice enticing villagers to buy his cilantro and hot peppers. Both live in rural villages where time moves more slowly and people look out for each other. Although Castro confiscated all land shortly after the Revolution, the Cuban government has since started allowing farmers to sell their excess harvest, and private food stands have popped up all over Cuba. Castro once tried - unsuccessfully - to eradicate religion in Cuba. Cubans still show their faith every year at the festival of San Lazaro. Many pilgrims crawl six miles to the church. Others drag rocks or suffer even more drastic penances. But Catholicism isn't the only religion in Cuba. Santeria - an African belief brought to Cuba with the slave trade - is practiced by over half the population. Hilda is a Santeria priestess and a devout Catholic. After hosting a huge Christmas dinner, she opens up her home to a secret Santeria celebration, complete with drums and dancing - and a spiritual possession. But as much as Cubans love their faith, they also love to laugh and entertain themselves. You'll find a game of dominoes on almost every street corner and the kids have their own hilariously Cuban version of Monopoly. They play to win and they're just as capitalist as their Yankee counterparts. That's a good thing, since the Cuban government is privatizing over a million jobs in Cuba. Manuel repairs shoes on a Havana street corner, and barely makes ends meet. And yet when his customers don't bother to pick up their shoes, he doesn't sell them - he gives them away. It's capitalism, Cuban style - with a human touch. Cubans are avid fishermen, and on any sunny morning you can find Jose fishing on Havana's waterfront. He owns almost no equipment and only two pairs of shorts,
More Full Episodes
Share your thoughts, questions, and comments on "Cuba's Secret Side" here.