Bill Nelson wrote:
Re: American cars:
I would have loved to have been able to visit America in the late 1950s, early '60s, when the now classic tail-finned, rocket-ship inspired cars cruised the US cities and highways. Yes, horrendous gas-guzzlers and highly ecologically incorrect vehicles, I know, but, despite all that, works of sculptural art on wheels...just fabulously dreamy machines.
Although I was born in working class Yorkshire I grew up with American pop-culture, music, films, comic books and technology, (as so many of my generation did.) Perhaps it was the Hollywood version of 'the 'States' rather than the real thing but the romance of it all was terribly seductive for a young boy surrounded by the drab, grey and austere atmosphere of post-war England.
Bill, those classic American cars are now in Cuba.http://www.danheller.com/cuba-cars.html
I saw a TV program about this some time ago. I don't recall how these classics made their way to Cuba. What's fascinating is that they are still running. Replacement parts of course can't be had so the owners hand-make all the parts. Incredible.
My wife Sam and I were fortunate enough to go on holiday to Cuba for a couple of weeks many many years ago - at that time practically nothing had changed since 1962 or whenever the embargo started - it was as if we had pinched Rod Taylor's (all right then,HG Wells') time machine and headed back a few decades -Havana was like being in an early James Bond film- absolutely fascinating - the cars were utterly stunning - I took literally hundreds of photos of whole cars /fins/wheels/hub caps etc.etc.etc.-amazing how you can keep a piece of ancient machinery going when you have no choice.
One other point to note - in spite of their difficult circumstances and acute poverty the people of Cuba(we met some lovely,lovely people)appeared much happier then the greedy ,mean -spirited ,aggressive,materialistic people who seem to be on the increase here...............
Sorry - that sounds a bit of a 'grumpy old man 'thing to add but it's true