“Guayabera-ing” / Regina Coyula

Photo: OLPL

A couple of weeks ago, headlines were made by the establishment of the guayabera as the garment for formal occasions, where once reigned a jacket and tie. The guayabera goes well with our climate and although other geographical regions claim its paternity, Sancti Spiritus, in the center of Cuba, is regarded by Cubans as the cradle of the garment, and is about to open its own museum where one can find the guayaberas of the painter Kcho, Garcia Marquez, Compay Segundo, Hugo Chavez, and Fidel Castro, among others.

Who attends formal activities in which the use of the guayabera is now in good taste? Officials. At receptions and official functions they gleam due to their whiteness. For young people, however, this garment is identified with power and they would only wear it if obligated. But if they decided to wear it, they would face a serious difficulty. The officials receive this garments as part of a module of clothing, or something like that. But guayaberas are only available in the foreign currency markets at the following prices:

Short sleeve, polyester: 13.50

“Creole” linen, long sleeve: 38.00

“Compay Segundo” linen, long sleeve: 64.00