Trip to Cuba: Excursion on Horseback — Rum and Coffee

Charlie and I, our wrangler William, and two other riders began our excursion through The Viñales Valley with a stop at the tobacco fields.

Sugar cane and coffee are grown in the same fields because coffee bushes need some shade to mature properly.

Combined sugar cane and coffee fields were next on the trip agenda.

Coffee beans are grown on bushes with shiny leaves.

Each stop along the way a guide was provided to tell us pertinent facts about the crops and  how they are processed.

Obviously coffee beans make coffee. Did you know sugar cane makes rum?

The guides are also supposed to sell us some of the finished products that can only be purchased on the plantations.

We were served a tiny sip of rum in a bamboo tasting cup of a brand, La Occidental Guayabita del Pinar, that is only available at the plantation.

While we succumbed to cigars we did not buy and rum nor coffee at this point in our journey.

This man went from table to table playing his Fender guitar and “singing”.

While we were waiting to be served a small tasting of rum a roving minstrel with a guitar serenaded us with a very aggressive song. A young lady in our party translated for us a suggestive love song of sorts.

This Fender guitar had an unusual stringing pattern.

When finished our musician laid a tip saucer on the table.

El Valle del Silencio

Then the five of us mounted up again to ride to the Valley of Silence where there was a small open-air cantina and a lake for swimming if one was so inclined.

Our silence was bombarded with a loud drunk who had evidently spent the day at the cantina and was now lying in the dirt yelling at the top of his lungs non-stop.

I think our wrangler thought I wouldn’t make it.

Since it was late in the day we did not swim.  The last leg of our journey, about 25 minutes, took us back to the stables.

We found a lot of inexpensive souvenirs at the market in Viñales.

We walked through town to return to our casa particulare stopping at the open-air market in the middle of town where we promised to return the next morning to make some souvenir purchases.

What’s your pleasure: rum, coffee, cigars?

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Author: Jo

Welcome to The Glade, where the second generation of renovations has just begun and the mania about our home, music and other passions fill our days and nights. We’re Charlie and Jo in the music world; Mary Jo and Charles to family; and JoJo and Charlie to each other. We are renovating a midcentury house in a Victorian historic district where we want to live there the rest of our lives. It's a 1946 house located in Maryland. We were married in this house. Thus far (pre-blog) we refinished cabinets, added a window seat (still working on the cushion), rearranged a wall in the guest house due to sink/vanity replacement, planted a vegetable garden, and other quick and not-so-quick fixes. So this latest zeal for construction is the result of my having lived here since 1997 and feeling a need to ready the house for the next chapter and beyond.

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