| HAVANNA – and we became butterflies
in conversation with: Jose Miguel Alonso “… and we became butterflies”
„You know, my comrad, I don‘t enjoy being a Minister, I would rather play chess like you, or make a revolution in Venezuela“
Fascinated by the fact that there is this closed world existing, where the time seams to have a completely different dimension, I asked my self, how this is possible. Instead of going faster and faster, time is trying to stretch one moment as long as possible. It is like a time capsule to me.
I met this lovley old couple, Jose and Jossy, living all there life together in this house, I was fascinated by the idea they didn‘t change anything over the time. It was like a fairytale to me and I wanted to know more about there life.
Jose: „When you have no job and even so, we are a little bit better of now, we don‘t know for how long. I am old, I am 78, my wife is three years less, we don‘t have much future, we don‘t have the slightest idea what we are going to do, or what is going to happen. A friend of me, a priest, once he asked a young man, why is he going away, he answered, because there is no future in Cuba. This is the word, to tell you, there is no security, that you are not sure that you can keep what you have, and things like that. My friend, the priest said: I think he is wrong. Yes! Cuba does have a future, what Cuba doesn‘t have, is a present!
… and we became butterflies
The title revers to the story Jose told me about the fact, that many things was forbidden by the socialist ideology and the people were punished for acting against it. And all over sudden the same fobidden things were allowed, the ideology was given up with no explanation. Over the time the people lost the idea what it was all about.
Jose: „You know there is a word, for those who did not sympathize with the government, they where called worms. When they wanted to criticizes all those, they said, we don‘t want worms in Cuba any longer.
So when all these people from the states starting to come, and then, people began to ask what happened to the worms, we said, they turned in to butterflies.“
After the revolution chess was also a part of the political game, in the conflict between the east and the west. Jose was organizing chess tournaments for the goverment and was playing chess with Che Guevara regulary in there free time.
Che once said to Jose: „You know, my comrade, I don‘t enjoy being a Minister, I would rather play chess like you, or make a revolution in Venezuela“