Our house was one city block long and sat on 7 acres. We had an Olympic sized swimming pool along with a two bedroom cabana conjoined with a full bar. There were 5 main bedrooms, two maids quarters with an adjoining bath, 2 chauffeurs apartments with baths and a four car garage. There was an industrial sized kitchen and pantry, 2 dining rooms, and an office. The patio was 3/4s of a block long with sofas and chairs. There was formal living room with grand piano. We had our own well and water treatment plant and back up generating system. The house had belonged to a minor government official like a county clerk here. Ours was one of the smaller and less lavish houses in the neighborhood. It didn't belong to us. We were allowed to live there as special friends of the new government to entertain visiting American dignitaries. I attended a private school where the skirt to my uniform in today's dollars would be around 250.00. You had to wear the specific uniform which was handmade and tailored in the most expensive department store in downtown Havana. The tuition would be around 300.00 a month now. It was a French School. All the homes shared a lovely one acre park with playground and a live in attendant and guard. The whole thing was fenced and locked to keep the peasants out. My governess would play cards and more with him at least twice a week while I played on the swings, slides and other industrial playground equipment. It was like a carnival that I had all to myself. After all, I really was just a peasant that had a priority pass. No other child would even enter the park when I was there.
One day a Russian freighter blew up in Havana harbor rattling the houses inland for 30 miles. Everyone thought the Dominican Republic had attacked and started shooting. The revolution had begun anew.
My governess ran to the school, five blocks away to get me. As we started through the vacant lot in front of the school the bullets started hitting around us. I was trained to duck and run in a zigzag pattern so I dragged her behind me as we ran from one clump of high grass to the next. If we had stopped whoever was shooting at us would have been able to target us.
After what seemed like eternity, we popped out of the grass to what should have been safety at the park but instead I found myself staring down the barrel of an M1 rifle. He was the one who had been shooting at us. My governess began screaming and crying, “why?”. I calmly raised the little purse I had my hand in and told him to lower the rifle or I would shoot. I actually had a 9mm Browning in the purse as I was never unarmed and my mother was unable to shoot straight. Even at 8, I was an expert marksman. He lowered the gun and we slowly walked backwards, me no longer using the purse to hide the gun I had aimed at him until we could seek shelter out of his sight.
My governess was hysterical and I knew that I would have to tell my father what happened when he came home condemning the man my governess considered her boyfriend right up until that day to death. I did what I was trained to do and reported the incident in detail. My father left with his friend and one guard to get the park attendant. They found him swinging from the overhead bars where he had hanged himself.
That is what life is like in a world where the elite have ruled. Even the people you have freed, given economic freedom from unending poverty and disease will try to kill you and bring back their masters rather than take control of their destiny and face the unknown.
Some call it Stockholm Syndrome but it is just plain fear of the unknown.
The Devil you know is better than the Devil you don't.
Ah, but the Devil you don't know may not be the Devil at all.
It is the fear of change, responsibility and freedom that locks the chains onto your legs and enslaves your mind.