A Young Woman's Courage: She Jumps At Noises But Faces A Beating From State Security

The second time I met Claudia Cadelo we were holding up -- each of us by one corner -- a piece of sheet with the name "Gorki". It was at the concert at the Anti-Imperialist Bandstand, where we chanted for the liberation of the singer from the band Porno Para Ricardo. Our shouts were heard briefly and then cut short thanks to the beatings they gave us and the enormous loudspeakers broadcasting the imperturbable voice of Pablo Milanes. A short time later, that girl by my side would open an honest and uninhibited blog, Octavo Cerco -- The Eighth Circle -- that now has many followers inside and outside of Cuba.

What I like most about Claudia is that she admits to being afraid, confesses that she jumps when she hears noises and that she fears the long arm of State Security. Who doesn't? In a country where so many have called themselves heroes, to declare in advance that you are frightened is something too sincere to be accepted. There is a mistaken idea that courage takes epaulets, years of incarceration, or scars; not the languid face of a calm woman who displays not rancor but questions. This fragile blogger, from her fear, disproves these stereotypes every day.

July 8th we celebrated Claudia's 26th birthday at our home. With the Blogger Journey, discussions, a documentary and even a little rum. I drank to this girl who writes her opinions, these truths that many mature and stout males only dare to whisper into the ears of their wives.

Yoani's blog, Generation Y, can be read here in English translation.