there is something to be said for seeing a city from above. not only are the views great, but you get to see some action that you don’t see at street level. a photographer i met before i went to cuba told me that the views from the rooftops in havana was great, and that many of the buildings were open to the casual wanderer, so i tried to go up to the top of every building that looked like it had a decent view. most of the time, i couldn’t reach the roof because there was a grill across the staircase leading to the top floor, but a few times i was able to ascend all the way.
in truth, whether i accessed the roof or not, apartment-dwellers generally didn’t seem bothered to have strangers walk into their buildings, climb the stairs, and ask the way to the roof. one woman, in fact, sent her daughter to show us the way up. on the other hand, another woman, whose apartment had the sole access to the roof, charged me 5 cuc (cuban convertible pesos) to go out onto her balcony, but she also had the best view in the city. i considered offering to bring the rest of my group up in exchange for a 10 percent commission, but i never got around to it.
of course, life at street level is pretty interesting, too, day and night. games, sports, shopping, car repair, and socializing. the occasional solicitation, too, of course, but that’s not something i caught on pixels.
more to come.