We made it back to the United States, completing our trip late last night. Everybody reported returning through U.S. customs without any problems.
Although we had good internet access in Havana, it was more problematic in Varadero. I wasn’t able to keep up with my posts on our expedition. We arrived at that beachside town Friday about noon, after a 2-hour bus trip from Havana. We checked-in to the Hotel Meliás Las Americas, then for the next few days we got into the habit of eating lunch and dinner later and later in the evening.
While in Varadero, we visited the home of Al Capone, which has been converted into a beachside restaurant—the Casa del Al. We also saw the Mansion Xanadú, the Spanish-style mansion built by American munitions magnate Irénée Du Pont in 1926 as a fabulous winter hideaway.
The most memorable event in Varadero was when we visited the Polyclinic and donated our medical supplies. We were given a tour of the facilities by the staff. Their comments were consistent with previous donations to other facilities. The Cubans are proud of their national healthcare system, but any donations are always welcome. They manage to stretch their limited supplies further than anyone could imagine.
Yesterday, we returned by bus to the airport in Havana and flew back to Cancún. As we flew west towards Mexico, we apparently crossed paths with the Pope, who was flying east towards Cuba. From Cancún, we took various flights to return to the U.S. As I said earlier, nobody reported any problems returning through U.S. customs with our licenses.