In these early years of my parents’ marriage, horrible news reached the family in Holguín



In these early years of my parents’ marriage, horrible news reached the family in Holguín. Pepe José, my grandmother’s brother had been murdered on his farm in El Pesquero.

He was one of the brothers who decided to stay and live in the country. They had wanted the fresh air and the simple life they were accustomed to. They referred to their houses, which were big, airy, and strong, as casones. They could care less that at night they had to use a commode or urinal, which they would have to empty into the outhouse latrine in the morning.

After my great-grandfather died, Pepe lived alone. Thieves knew that a lot of people kept money at their farms after harvest season, so farmers had ferocious dogs and guns to protect themselves and their property against criminal thugs. Pepe was no exception; but, strangely, Pepe’s dogs did not bark at all the night of the robbery.

Two armed thieves were able to make it right to the house. They were experienced robbers and knew what they were doing. One entered the house and told Pepe to get all his money. Pepe went directly to his bedroom making the robber believe he was going for the money, but he got his gun instead. He came out of the bedroom thinking he was only dealing with one man; but while he went to the bedroom, the other armed robber came inside and hid behind the door. Pepe shot the first robber dead. At this point, the intruder behind the door shot Pepe several times. The second thief managed to get away, but not before Pepe shot him.

Pepe lingered and then died a few days later. The thief survived the night in a plantain field by plugging his wounds with mud. He was arrested by the rural police, tried, and sentenced to life in prison. When Fidel took over, he emptied the jails and released my great uncle’s murderer.

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Dania Rosa Nasca
April 28, 2016


Some amazing Stats!

Mar 30, 2016 – Apr 28, 2016

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The ruin of Cuba continued...................

The ruin of Cuba continued to accelerate on all fronts.  Cubans were no longer free to travel abroad. 

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Dania Rosa Nasca
April 28, 2016

Fidel


EXCERPT
In truth, there were really only two things Fidel was very good at—sports and deceit
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Dania Rosa Nasca 
April 27, 2016

 

Later, after my grandparents moved to Holguín.......



Later, after my grandparents moved to Holguín and before Fidel’s agrarian “reform” stripped them of their land, the farm continued to help support my grandparents, their two unmarried adult daughters, and my uncle.
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Dania Rosa Nasca 
April 23, 2016

Great, Global Audience!!

I'm humbled and full of gratitude that so many of you  are reading excerpts from Lights Out. This indicates there is a global audience for my memoir. 

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Book Cover

Nothing speaks more than an old black and white photograph. There are no distractions in an old black and white picture. It takes you to ground zero.  It takes you right into the heart of the story.

I'm strongly contemplating using a black and white old family picture for the cover of Lights Out.
A BIG welcome to all new followers!









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Tragedy affects people in different ways

Excerpt


Tragedy affects people in different ways, and different people grieve in different ways, but usually grieving brings acceptance and healing. My grandparents, my mother, my aunts, and my uncle had every right to grieve. Imagine how horrible and painful it was for my grandfather to lose his brightest son in such a senseless, tragic way. How his heart must have ached, yet Papasito made it through this profound loss. Perhaps he realized that he had other children and that he had to go on for them.

For my grandmother it was different. The moment of Valito’s death was the moment that my grandmother’s madness began. The day my grandmother buried her son was the day that the light went out. She was traumatized for life. Valito’s death compounded the trauma she had suffered from the circumstances surrounding my great-grandmother’s death.


When my great-grandmother was on her deathbed, she kept telling my grandmother that she could not die without her. Following the guanche* beliefs and old-country tales that my immigrant great-
grandparents brought from the Spanish Canary Islands, when my great-grandmother died, the women measured my grandmother, just a little girl, and put her measurement in her mother’s coffin. This secular, old-country custom meant that my grandmother’s mother was taking my grandmother with her in spirit; and, therefore, my grandmother was destined to live a sad, miserable life.


Valito’s death only intensified her belief that it was true.


*Canary Islands natives


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Dania Rosa Nasca
April 14, 2016

Excerpt

Later my grandparents moved to Calle Cervantes and gave their Fomento home to my parents so that their  family could live close by, as was the custom.

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Dania Rosa Nasca
April 11, 2016

Another Sweet Story From The Farm



Medical care was available in many rural areas, often provided by doctors who traveled to the campo to render medicine to the campesinos.* Dr. Pérez Zorrilla, one of Holguín’s first doctors, visited the country once a week, riding on a horse. Once my mother and my uncle got the chickenpox at the same time. They were so uncomfortable from the itching that Dr. Zorrilla came around and prescribed a medicated powder to apply all over their bodies. My mom remembered getting such relief from the powder. My grandmother decided the children should be on a liquid diet while they were ill. When she wasn’t looking my uncle got out of bed, headed to the kitchen, and helped himself to a full plate of congrí† from the stove and ran back to bed, all in seconds.


* Rural people.
 † A Cuban dish of white rice and black beans, cooked together.

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Dania Rosa Nasca
April 9, 2016




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