By Yoani Sanchez for El Pais newspaper, 15 August 2008
Sometimes I get futuristic fantasies, especially when the present persists in being grey, faded and monotonous.¬† This week I have projected a short leap towards the future, a brief hop to Sunday, August 13 in 2026.¬† That date will mark the hundredth anniversary of the birth of Fidel Castro who, a couple of days ago, blew out 82 candles on his birthday cake.¬† Without a crystal ball nor the quartets of Nostradamus, I appeal to the logic of biology to confirm that it will be a celebration without his presence.
Some that today, like little pioneers, declaim patriotic poems, will wear T-shirts with the face of the one who was the Maximum Leader.¬† Caps in the style he wore will be purchased at the entry to the small theater where a limited number of his supporters will celebrate the century of his birth.¬† For the youngest, who had never heard his speeches, there will be a compilation of the most memorable harangues on sale.
On a red curtain they will highlight the name of the one who controlled the destiny of Cuba for five decades.¬† On stage, those who knew him will deliver their testimony, interspersed with songs and excerpts from his numerous addresses.¬† The announcement of the event will be published alongside the notices of weddings, bereavements and baptisms, in one of the many newspapers that will circulate.¬† By then we will have been presented with the declassification of certain passages of his life and his followers will not have been able to prevent the attacks from making a dent in the figure of olive green.
That day, only eighteen years from now, will go by in peace.¬† The Fidelistas of that time will have the freedom to applaud their leader.¬† This will happen in the same theater where, a week before, a once-exiled writer will have read his texts, or a salsa orchestra will have interpreted the immortal songs of Celia Cruz.
Translated from the original Spanish.