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Saturday, 26 March 2016 La Habana, Cuba

rolling stones

The highlight of this week: most definitely the Stones coming into town and throwing a mindblowing concert. For me, they pretty much trumped Obama.

A couple of weeks ago I heard of this rumour that the Rolling Stones would be playing in Cuba. I didn't really think much of it at first, but it turned out they would be performing for free and after their stay in Havana, donate all their instruments and I think even equipment to the Cubans. I can't really say I know a lot about the Stones and their music, but really, that was just no excuse for me not to go.

Luckily, my language school was able to provide us with transportation, without any it would have been a real nightmare, but it ended up being one anyway. I've never seen so many people in one place, ever!They were from all over the world. Locals, tourists and even latinos flying into Havana specifically for the Stones. From 5 y/o's to real oldies, pretty princesses to punks; every imaginable human being was to be found and it was absolutely fantastic.

Even the weather played along. Although the whole day had been a bit downcast, of course the sky openend up half an hour before the concert, revealing a beautiful sunset. 

The crowd was booming, completely hyped for what was about to go down on stage. It was quite funny, everybody mistaking me for a cubana and trying to talk spanish with me and due to the huge amount of people, there was no possible way of contacting or even finding each other if we got lost. But that's not relevant, what I enjoyed most whilst waiting for the concert to begin was people watching. It's always delighting to do so in different countries and crowded places, but on the huge field where the concert took place, people watching reached a whole new level. I wasn't able to take in everything fast enough. There some youngsters with combs stuck in their afros, next to them the rastafaris, people patriotically waving their flags from argentina, cuba to russia and behind me people dancing salsa, smoking cigars and drinking their rum. The character's I came across that evening can't even be described. Hardcore Stones fans, Asian tourists of course with giant DSLR's in hand, locals in the crowds but also on the roofs of the surrounding houses cheering and drinking their heads off, and of course the overly excited, drunk and crazy ones. And I was just sitting there taking it all in.

At 8:30 the concert finally started and in Cuba, I at last experienced something tk start without delay. That was hard to believe, next to the fact that this time it wasn't me that got a beer cup thrown at my head, but the lucky person standing next to me. Tough Luck. (;

The Stones absolutely rocked the stage and the crowd loved it. I, in particular, enjoyed watching the drummer. While the rest of the band, admittedly probably having entered their 60s, were jumping around on stage like true rockstars, the old, grey guy playing the drums (shame on me for not remembering his name) sat their, with an almost bored look on his face but absolutely smashed it. In fact, they all did. Mick Jagger and his moves (got the moves like Jagger - for his age SO impressive!) were of course legendary, the bassists solos incredible and the overall performance mindblowing.

It was definitely an unforgettable event of which I migbt be able to tell my grand children about (; Although, I have to admit I was quite disturbed by how many outfit changes Jagger had on stage. Seemed to me like he had packes more clothes for 2.5h than I had for the next 5 months. Well, I guess you can't have everything when you're not a legend like Jagger.


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