Ultimately Neal and Nina decided to travel to CUBA for their 10 year anniversary trip! What a wonderfully enlightening and relaxing trip that really gave them a lifetime of memories in just a short 3.5 days. Here is the complete low down on their wonderful trip:
Nina struggled with what to pack and what to wear as she literally has not shopped since before getting pregnant with Nesa. She must have checked a gazillion Pinterest boards and blogs to get some ideas and ultimately she packed just the right amount for this trip! Her suggestions for absolute must haves for Cuba
are: a light scarf
, 3 shoes (walking
, sneakers, flip flops), a hat
, light clothing (links below), and a light backpack
for water, sunblock, snacks, etc. and last but not least – your CAMERA because the entire country is breathtaking!
Dress (Free People 2015), HAT
Black Dress (Old Navy 2014)
Nina was extremely nervous about leaving Nesa for the first time for more than a night, especially because she started to catch a cold the day before they were leaving (but of course!!!). So she planned it in a way that the older two would stay with Neal’s mom and the baby would stay with Mommy Vaid, this way no one set of parents would be overwhelmed. For the baby she wrote down her exact routine, sent lots of extra pouches of food and all of her necessities. For the older two, she had created a template which includes their routine, doctors info, school info, vet info, pet school, emergency contacts, etc. She even went as far as meal planning for every day that they would be away and setting out the baggies of snacks and all. EVERY single family member was sent this form via email and then a WhatsApp group was created just so everyone could stay in touch with them and with each other. She really wanted to make sure that Naya and Niva’s routine was maintained and her in-laws really pulled through!!! They even kept Nylo with them so that he wouldn’t be lonely either :). We will be sharing these insanely organized planning notes with you all here shortly.
Going to Cuba was literally like taking a step back in time. It was like being in the early 90’s all over again. Kids playing on the street, neighbors hanging out on their front stoop, and people just talking to each other everywhere – not engrossed in their media devices! Parts of it felt a lot like Mumbai, though it was very clean in terms of dust and there were virtually zero homeless people, but in place of the rickshaw fumes were Diesel vintage run cars. Because WiFi has not been implemented there yet, you literally were detached from the world and could enjoy every breathtaking moment. Nina really enjoyed the cultural aspect of it – the constant juxtaposition of old and new is unreal. They visited inside people’s homes, the hospital, a grade school, the supermarket, a few museums and cathedrals and the outskirts of Old Havana. The people were all extremely friendly and really made the effort to make you feel welcomed in their country. They never felt unsafe. Nina did notice that people there are very well dressed in the sense that you never saw anyone walking around in their pajamas or sweats or workout gear. The food and drinks were awesome as well with many options for vegetarians!
There is not enough to be said about this app!!! It’s basically an app that you download and then you can download the map of ANY city in the world and it works completely offline through GPS. You can search for places and everything. So being unable to use Google maps since there was no cellphone signal, this was an epic time saver. You can then star and favorite places you go to so that when you get back home, you have all the saved destinations! So so so cool!
Overall the trip was one that will be remembered for a long time. They cannot wait to go back and explore regions that they were unable to get to this time!!!