The school year ended and already I see a danger to my bread ration. My son will be out of school for over two months and, in the excitement of the holiday, could eat the hinges off the doors. He cannot be satisfied with the floury specimen of 80 grams that he receives from the ration and is sure to attack my quota or that of his dad’s.
Meanwhile, I am preparing myself for the typical questions, “Mommy, aren’t we going to visit our family in Camagüey?” I try to explain to him that the line for the interprovincial bus is three days long and they are already selling tickets for the second half of July. Neither will it appease him to know that the price of taking one of the new Chinese Yutong articulated buses to the center of the Island is half the average worker’s salary.
But I will try to please him and will cede my bread, sleep three days in the line for a ticket to Camagüey and until then I will even rent a couple hours of Play Station time from a neighbor. All this because he has finished seventh grade with good marks and deserves to be honored. Last Saturday, the end of the school year, he returned to the house with his diploma and launched his war cry from the doorway, “I am on vacation!”
The only thing is, I don’t know if my son has graduated from the seventh grade or from the Communist Party School “Ñico Lopez”. The confusion began when I saw the diploma, which you can look at – here – so you can see where my uncertainty comes from. What do you think?
Photo caption: A vendor exhibits one of the “delicacies” of our days, a claria [a type of catfish]