- Santiago de Cuba
- Cienfuegos and Havana, Cuba
- English, Spanish, and French
- Hobbies & Interests
- Reading, producing music, design, and writing
- With us since
Life was relatively easy for me as a kid growing up in Santiago, as Cuba’s economy was still sponsored by the Soviet Union. Even though my parents had good jobs in Havana, I was very well taken care of by my grandmother and aunt in Santiago. In 1996 I began working as a tour guide and I love my job—explaining my country to visitors, connecting them with my fellow countrymen, and creating bridges between different people with different cultures.
Many people I have led through Cuba just come here to take pictures, but Grand Circle Foundation participants know better. They are experienced travelers who know that if you really want to get to the soul of a country, you have to talk with the people. And to have life-changing experiences, you have to be willing to know the truth—good, bad, or ugly. What helps me connect with them is my commitment to show and tell the truth. I remember one Grand Circle Foundation participant who had been born in Cuba but left the island when he was 14 years old—he hadn’t been back in 51 years. I took him to his old house and neighborhood. He was so grateful and I watched as his childhood memories came flooding back to him through many tears. It was very powerful and it also helped me to better understand my own childhood and my country’s history.