“Weep not for me, my friends so dear. I am not dead, just sleeping here. My grassy bed, my grave you see. Prepare in life to follow me.”

The Cementerio de Cristóbal Colón in Havana covers an incredible 140 acres of land in the Vedado neighbourhood of the city. It also happens to be about 8 blocks from our house in Havana. I visited there one afternoon and was astounded by the monuments and sheer number of graves. Much of the necropolis is marble and represents almost 150 years of family burials in Havana. Started in 1876, the cemetery seems almost like a city of the dead with the small mausoleums standing in for houses. One mourner left an empty bottle of Havana Club, which I like to imagine he drank while sitting and talking with his dead comrade’s tomb.

Title quote: Leander Watts, Beautiful City of the Dead


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