The Highest Honor

It’s been an incredibly hectic, crazy, tiring couple of weeks at the Prieto household and I am in dire need of some major R&R. Thus Im going to take this weekend to recoup some rest, catch up on the sleep Ive been chasing for days and let the events of the past week or two sink in.
But I wanted to leave you all with someting that certainly lifted my spirits.
After being invited to the White House, after having met an incredibly couple in Matthew and Cathy, after standing just 20 feet from the President of the United States of America as he delivered a galletazo sin mano to raul and co, after meeting incredible men and women whose family members are incarcerated in Cuba, and after hearing Chirino perform Ya Viene Llegando at the event, I had the absolute honor and privilege to sing the Cuban National Anthem in the White House.
Think about that for a second, folks. Just imagine yourself standing there among all those people who work for the freedom of Cuba, in the halls of history, where portraits of the founders of this nation adorn the halls and walls and where most of the most important decisions for this country and the world have been made, singing Al combate, corred, Bayameses…
I could barely muster the words as I was so moved at the moment, and even as I stood there in the White House realizing that I know the history of this country much better than the history of Cuba, I have never, ever, felt more Cuban than in those few moments singing La Bayamesa.

¡Al combate, corred, Bayameses!,
Que la patria os contempla orgullosa;
No temáis una muerte gloriosa,
Que morir por la patria es vivir.
En cadenas vivir es vivir
En oprobio y afrenta sumido,
Del clarín escuchad el sonido;
¡A las armas, valientes, corred!

Viva Cuba libre and God bless America!

2 thoughts on “The Highest Honor”

  1. Val, I was trying not to cry while watching the event since I was at work, but I lost it when La Bayamesa was sung. I was trying to sing it low enough so my co-workers would not hear me, but they noticed my tears and came over to make sure I was ok. When I explained what it was about, they too started getting teary eyed. I can just imagine your reaction being there in person. Also now whenever I hear Willy sing Ya Viene Llegando, I will think of the despicable Actos de Repudio, and the courage that many Cubans have shown, especially the women. I certainly would have needed a truckload of kleenex if I had been there. Enjoy your family and your well deserved R&R. You represented us well at the White House and you certainly earned the honor of being there.

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