Havana streets choked with huge garbage piles, even in ‘privileged’ neighborhoods

Corner of Calle 30 & Avenida 37, Playa

From our Bureau of Socialist Sanitation Priorities with some assistance from our Bureau of Socialist Vermin Breeding

Castro, Inc. boasts that it is hauling away a whopping 74% of the total garbage generated in Havana, but the giant stinking piles of trash created by the remaining 26% keep growing day by day, even in exclusive oligarch-ridden neighborhoods. There are always plenty of vehicles for constant police surveillance, and plenty of gasoline to keep them running, Habaneros complain, but there are never enough garbage trucks, One resident joked that Castro, Inc. should hitch trailers to the police cars and make them haul the trash.

Once again, be amazed by the wonders of daily life in a Latrine American socialist utopia. At least the flies, rats, and cockroaches are happy. They are the best fed Cubans on the island, and also the most prolific breeders. No population decline among this segment of the population.

The trash pile in the photo above is just a few blocks from my former residence in Havana, near the barbershop where I always got my hair cut when I was a child, and also near the little convenience store “Saxony”, from which I used to steal toy soldiers until my parents shamed me out of the sinful Hell-worthy habit by insisting that I return my stolen goods and apologize to the store’s owner.

That pile of trash in the photo above has just polluted my memories of those two childhood haunts. It’s a good thing that I lost my sense of smell when I smashed up my brain nine years ago in a bicycling accident. The pollution caused by that trash is only mental and visual. Without a sense of smell, it is impossible to remember any odors, either foul or delightful. They have vanished from memory as well as from lived experience. Too bad Castro, Inc. can’t vanish the same way.

From 14yMedio via Translating Cuba

“We can’t even open the balcony door because the house is full of flies,” laments Clara, a resident of 30th Street at the corner of 37th, in the municipality of Playa, in Havana. A few meters from her home, a huge garbage dump has been growing for weeks without the Community Services Company collecting the waste. What was once a clean, quiet residential neighborhood “now looks like a garbage dump,” the woman complains.

Close to the Cira García international clinic, where tourists and diplomats are treated, the block where Clara lives does not have the luck of the large avenues. “In these most hidden streets we have not seen the collection trucks for more than a month,” this 43-year-old Havana resident describes to 14ymedio. “Every time we complain they tell us there is no fuel to move the vehicles.”

Neighbors in the area have taken photos of the garbage dumps “from all angles” and some of the images have reached the eyes of the municipal mayor. The residents themselves in the vicinity have proposed that electric tricycles be used to at least “alleviate the situation.” Some have even joked about the “selective lack of fuel,” which does not seem to affect police patrols.

“They should put a cart behind [the police cars] so that, while they do their surveillance rounds, they can also take advantage and evacuate some of the accumulated garbage,” says Clara, but she senses that her proposal will fall on deaf ears. “Every time we complain, they tell us they will work on it but we have been like this for weeks, surrounded by bad smells and flies.”

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