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Tuesday, 9 February 2010

VENEZUELA DIARY PART 5



After a sleepless night, i turned up at the ice cream arlour the next morning, just before noon. Fat Markus was already there, licking some strangely coloured ice cream. A parcel sat on his table and his little wife sat giggling beside him. The cool tiled walls made the place welcoming from the wet heat outside.

Good morning, Y. He was in a jovial mood again, 'strange'i thought and shook his hand. I did some preparation for you, he chuckled. Small automatic weapon. He passed me across the Uzi. You know this works? israel special forces secret weapon. Small, compact, packs a shot. 'Ok' i nodded. i knew how to use it. Rope, matches, food, the other things you can buy on route. Heres a list. He passed it across. What was that large thing left? trousers? what do i want wit trousers in this heat? Markus looked at me and smiled. Y, you wlll go undercover. You may have noticed, the Roja. They all know each other from their from their distinctive sign. Some gangs use tattoos, some jewellery. We couldnt help but laugh, Maria and i...he opend up the kahki long trousers. BELL BOTTOMS? you must be kidding. hahahaha, he roared out laughing, like a mad divinity professor in the Venezualan Andes would. Yes, Y, you see Roja members pride themselves in their bell bottom trousers. This is how you can identify them and they each other. im not sure the origin of this habit but i understand it was connected to the original leaders fondness for 'Saturday night fever' back in the day. Anyway. Wear these and you will get places you wouldnt other. he was serious now but still smirking as he handed them over.

Finally heres a map. The guys have a gaurded town and temple complex on top of one of the tabletop mountains near the Brasilian border, Mount Roraima. Its not easy to get to, they normally fly, but you can climb it no problem....

Cursing i went to the bathroom and put on my flared khaki trousers. My pack on my back and my Uzi over my shoulder i sauntered out into the Venezuela heat, Markus and his wife cackling at my 70's look...'airport please' i asked the taxi driver.

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