Classic Car HustlerDay one in downtown Havana: sightseeing here we come. I’m barely out of the van when a guy waves me over to a gorgeously restored Chevy: a ‘56 Bel Air sports sedan.

“I give you a ride, señor!” He tries to push me inside.

He’s in my face, and I scurry away.

Another local falls in beside me, grinning as if he were a long-lost brother. “Ola, amigo!” As we walk, he scratches out a caricature in his notebook with a felt pen. He finishes, thrusts it at me.

I see glasses and moustache, but nothing else I would recognize in a mirror.

Meanwhile, another dude corners Annie. They’re “Picasso” and “DaVinci,” they say with straight faces, and the bargaining begins.

I know better, but we pony up for their “art” anyway. We’ve been had – fleeced the first morning out. How embarrassing; we’re not newbie tourists!

That was the beginning . . . but it turned out to be the exception. Some Cubans do ask us for money, but quietly; we’re never hassled. Others just want to chat.

Click here to meet the hustlers.

newspaper art

Sign Up for News Flashes

Please keep in touch! And to be notified for events around A Rendezvous to Remember and other news from us, please sign up. Our promise? We won’t sell your address to anyone or clutter up your inbox with junk.

    Tampa Web Design - Off the Page Creations