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TV show helps Victoria father, son forge bond in Cuba after 11 years apart

Adonis was 21 when he left Cuba; Jordan was 21 when the pair returned

Shaving, brushing their teeth and getting in a few push-ups to start the day alongside his dad stand out as bonding moments Jordan Puentes.

These little things are as important as the fact the Victoria men were in Cuba, reconnecting with their roots, and with each other – all the while cameras were documenting their every move.

Puentes and his father Adonis are featured in the first episode of the second season of How I Got Here a show that documents second-generation children accompanying their parents back to their country of origin.

For the Victoria men exploring their heritage was a means to rebuild a bond after an 11-year estrangement.

“In those moments we’ve bonded just as much,” Puentes said. “Getting ready for the day. Getting ready to go out, getting ready to face those things.”

Adonis was 21 when he left Cuba to pursue his music career. Puentes is 21 as the pair returned.

When first approached about the mini-doc, Adonis was at first slightly apprehensive. Coming from a Latin culture he’s accustomed to sharing emotion, but that’s less common across the North American population.

“I’m a musician I’m a songwriter and I have no problem showing myself as I am,” he said. “I want to show to the world that we have a strong story with a happy ending and it’s important to embrace love, forgiveness, re-connection.”

Seeing it as an opportunity to perhaps inspire others, Puentes agreed, though notes it took strength and vulnerability.

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While moments of the trip could be overwhelming, it was an amazing experience for Puentes to bond with his dad, and explore both of their history and heritage.

For Puentes included meeting a huge extended family, and along the way diving into the history of generations of music in his DNA.

He already knew it was in his blood. He remembers making it part of most school projects, particularly at Mount Doug Secondary in Saanich, including a rap to remember Isaac Newton’s laws of motion.

“I think they still use that physics rap,” he said with a laugh.

While talking music with his family in Cuba sparked emotion, the biggest wave came on a rooftop in Havana. Overlooking the capital, Puentes performed freestyle with a local rapper, a producer, and his father.

Victoria father and son, Adonis Puentes and Jordan Puentes are featured in the first episode of the second season of How I Got Here a show that documents second generation children accompanying their parents back to their country of origin. The second season begins on Heart & Home on Mar. 4. (Courtesy FORTÉ Entertainment/Super Channel)

“We shared a moment after that really bonding,” Jordan said. “That was the time we came the closest together.”

They went on to record a song for the documentary and with an accompanying video expected to launch soon.

“Learning more about family, learning about your history helps grow more comfortable in yourself,” Jordan said. “Find your heritage, find your history and you’ll find those people that matter to you and who you matter to as well.”

The episode kicks off the second season of How I Got Here begins on Super Channel’s Heart & Home on March 4. The show is available on demand starting March 5.

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Christine van Reeuwyk

About the Author: Christine van Reeuwyk

Longtime journalist with the Greater Victoria news team.
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