118 years ago, the Pearl of the Antilles formally became independent from Spanish rule. The phrase was coined by W Goodman, a British painter whose 1873 book of paintings and illustrations about Cuba bears the title "The Pearl of the Antilles"
This phrase is just one of many praising names given to my island: Being the largest of the Antilles islands, Cuba offered to colonialists the most natural resources and was regularly considered to be the most beautiful. CUBA geographical position made its ports of Havana and Santiago the best spots to control the Caribbean and launch expeditions back to Spain.
In the not too distant future, I hope we will celebrate another day of independence from al dictatorship that has ruled over the island since 1959. Viva Cuba Libre!