Verela taken over the helm of leadership in Panamá, Martinelli humbled, but not bowed! And Men and women behind bars awaits their fates.

Posted in Behind Bars in Panama on July 16, 2014 by doingtimeabroad

The greatest feats of survival speak equally to the persistence and durability of the human spirit and the courage of those forced to undergo extraordinary trials.

Sometimes the thing we can’t change end up changing us.

“The snake which cannot cast its skin has to die. As well the minds which are prevented from changing their opinions; they cease to be mind.” – Nietzsche

Tue, 1 Jul 2014
An early day, feeling bit better with regards to my lower back and sciatica pains. Praying its gets more better than how I feel now.

Went through my early morning rituals of brushing and brewing my fruit-infused green tea; the lads can’t drink pure green tea, they want something infused with fruits flavours and with added sugar, rather want mine pure y sin azucar.

Signal wasn’t at its best today, brief chat with schat, haven’t spoken with my lil girl for days now, heard she pretty busy with school work, piano lesson, swimming and football practice, so much to get her knackered at the end of each day. Schat is doing a great job with the kids. Exchanged voicenotes with my littlest princess, who’s always eager to be at the nursery; learning a lot both from nursery and from her siblings. She is yet to meet and know me in person, but adores me from the way we talk to each other, always asking when I will be back home. Can’t wait to lift her up and give her a fatherly warm hug.

Took out some beans from the lot my mate bought from the old cow who nicked it from the kitchen. But it seems the contractor in charge of our food, went to the factory where beans are processed and bought all the shafts and leftovers; had to washed it like twenty times and picked out more stones than the beans itself. Finally got it clean enough and ready to cook, left for my cell to get ready for another beautiful day in the gym.

Set the beans on fire, dressed up and left a bit late for today’s workout. My training mates were waiting for me. Started with body-weight exercises and stretches to warm up. We rushed through excruciating #HIIT #Hardcore #Back and #Biceps, then rounded up with hanging leg/knee raise.

Inside, no water today, though water came, but the lad in charge of water, whom I heard swearing to his cellmates that, when he leaves, he will be going home with the electric pump and all the pipes; what a wanker! Well, we will wait and see how it goes when he leaves.

Some water left from yesterday’s, enough to have my clothes washed and also get a proper shower. But rushed through a proper protein shake with my training partners before jumping into the shower for a quick scrub. And peeping through to watch the football match between Argentina and Switzerland. Too bad the swiss were sent home, my day would have been a perfect if Messi and his crew were sent home; tired of Barcelona fans in the pavilion and their noise ;-)

Cell A7 has literally become the noisiest cell in the pavilion, a mix of an English Man, Jamaican, Suriname, Brazil, Dominicans, Africans, Colombian, American and a Caymanians has turned the cell into total chaos. They wake up everyday and start the day with lousy and noisy arguments; sometimes over nothing of importance. They once argued about women menstrual cycle, that was when I knew, an Idle man is not just the devil’s workshop but also an empty one. Why on earth should men be arguing about women menstrual cycle!? Friggin don’t want to hear or see it ;-), well do ask schat when she is under construction, so as to know when to drive through or packed out ;-)

From what I have seen about the lads in cell A7, I can write a book about them; everyone in the pavilion knows and are used to them. Personally, I think it’s their own way of releasing the buildup stress on the inside. Sometimes a normal discussion becomes very heated that others will gather around to see who will throw the first punch, only then will one know, they are having manly discussions but a heated one.

Yesterday and today, they kept me up, I couldn’t catch my afternoon nap, but then, I’m used to them and used to the noise in the pavilion.

Change of leadership and the man at the helm of leadership, Martinelli is handing over to Verela, a once time ally who fought a bitter battle of words over Martinelli’s corruption and manipulating power to turn panama into his own. But, Panamanians weren’t ready to be fooled again, they voted for Verela and rejected Martinelli’s man and his wife who was a running mate. That sets all his castles of cards grumbling down.

Juan C. Verela was sworn in today as the new president of panama, to take the country through a five-year roller coaster ride. We will wait and see what he has in stock!

Wed, 2 Jul 2014
Last night, some minutes past midnight, our alarm system went off, likely someone has taken ill. The banging on the door went on for about 15mins, finally stopped, wouldn’t know if cops came for the sick inmate. Will find out later who took ill.

Woke up early around 4am, but went back to sleep, and finally got up around 6am. Bit late to get upstairs, if it’s not public holiday, there should be school today. Thus, the list will be in soon for those going to school.

Finally got upstairs with a cup of green tea and get started with surfing and reading; news and brief chat with ever-busy schat, my lil girl barely have time for me as she is choked with school work, homework, and other activities, hope a hello once in a while. Though, schat said, her phone is giving her problems and she wants a new phone; an update from the old banger she’s been using; damn trendy!

Signal wasn’t that strong, but good enough to do my daily tweeting and read today’s news and other interesting articles, those I couldn’t open, sent the links to schat, who opens them and copy me the articles on Whatsapp, saves me time and headache.

My mate lives on a shack built on top of a cell that was once predominantly Jamaicans. But, being prison and everyone is meant to do his time and leave or leave through other means, many had gone and the cell is now mixed; few of my compatriots passed through that cell and one is still there, waiting to leave. But the lads in the cell assumes everything and the cell is theirs. But, I’m yet to see any inmate upon release, breaking down his cell or bunk and take them home; maybe the Jamaicans will be the first, there’s always a first time for everything, like being banged up in my life and the first, pray it will be the last as I don’t want to go through this experience again; mentally and physically, could be draining!

One of the Jamaicans came up and started a verbal war with my mate; asked my mate if he had washed soap on top of the tanks that has water which they use downstairs, and my friend said NO, the lad started raining abuses and insults on my friend. This, got my wondering, what part of NO he didn’t understand! You asked a grown-ass man if he did something and he said NO and you don’t any witness to proved he did, then take it or leave, but lad started insulting my mate. My mate being a quiet type just kept still, but I couldn’t keep my cool. I took over and told him to fucking go to hell and be cultured! I literally shut him down, well, I was ready for whatever will come next, but he knowing me, respected himself and went downstairs. My intervention, has put his stop to his stupidity, he ‘d mentioned, that’s not my cell, I should go to my cell……to which I responded; “If you are man enough, carry me from here to my cell”, the prison is government property and we are all government properties. And I hate going into their cell, my last stop is always at my mate’s corner on top of their cell.

My final warning to him and all his dope-head friends was; “A man is quiet, not because he’s scared, but because he knows what he’s capable of doing” and I hope we wouldn’t get to that. He has his crew and I have mine; all watching each other backs.

Glad the list for school came, had to rush and changed into our conspicuous yellow coloured T-shirt; prison uniform, not provided by the prison, everyone get theirs. Some go for designer brands; Polo, Tommy Hilfiger, Armani, and other brands, but most are sport brands; Nike, Adidas, puma and other imitation stuffs. I have about four yellow tops; one polo and three Tees; Lee Copper, Timberland, Panama Canal ;-) (made for the canal company), and a Chinese cheap thing, which has grown hair ;-).

Roll call to school came a bit late, thus, a short day at school; better that way, as it’s bloody hot, felt like fainting. Had to downed a cup of water before leaving, and the classes are enclosed concrete structures, got me wondering, who designed the building, well to keep warring gangs away and out of reach. Yet, they still find ways to get knives and guns into the classrooms and finish their unfinished jobs #PrisonViolence

Classes went a bit fast, checked the prison grocery, nothing new or of importance to me; whatever is sold there, when brought down to the pavilion, the price either doubles or triples #PrisonBusiness.

It reminds me, a lad called servio (man of god) here, and sells pineapple and rice pudding; after asking him how much he bought a container of cinnamon sticks from the grocery upstairs. He laughed and didn’t tell, just because he wants to ripped me if I asked him to buy for me. One thing I have learned about prison; nobody does anything for anyone without thinking of what his profit will be.

On our way to school, we went through search and the #GayCop was still at the door; seems he’s enjoying himself patting and groping inmates. Most cops spends a week there and are rotated around the pavilion. From what an inmate said, he chose to stay there so as to feed his fantasy; groping inmates, but this day wasn’t one of lucky day. He patted a local inmate and groped the lad’s ball, the lad reacted violently, telling him; got other cops running over, but it was a light incident as they all know what the ugly gay cop was up to; maybe after frisking and groping, he goes into the dirty toilet to wank himself off; light a fag, smoke and satisfied!

Done with school and back in, an inmate made a wrong move at one of us; picking up a lad’s book, and told him, they are his. At first, the lad was scare, but held his cool, then the local laughed, that’s how they start and sooner or later, it’s a full brown war.

Back in, the lads were still busy in the gym, but too late for me to hit the weights. Rushed and showered, ate something before trying to catch some sleep, to make up for what I didn’t get last night. Few minutes into my sleep, heard screaming and footsteps as inmates ran helter-skelter; yanked off my phones and everything straight to our stash spots, within seconds we were done. But it was a false alarm, but also bad for my health, well prison is bad for my health. Couldn’t get back to sleep.

What set our alarm off, was the presence of two cops and a warden who came for a lad nicknamed #Samurai; lad was thrown out of pavilion 8, after he nicked a phone and was fought be four inmates. He had a pal here, who is now released, through his released friend, he was sent here. Lad really look like a samurai; full of tattoos and a patch of hair on the back of head like an Inca warrior. He’s in for killing; #GangsWar

Why did cops came for him as he was settling into life within our pavilion? Heard he bought coke from the locals using a name of his pal, thus, the locals who are ready to kill for dollar, descended on the lad whose name he used to purchase dope. They asked him for their money and also doubled the money; interest incurred for time-wasting #PrisonBusiness

When our pavilion direction knew about this, and what will happen, they told the cops to come get him. At first, he refused, then came the reinforcement. Finally taken out, not going back to pavilion 8. So, he will be housed with the locals and few foreigners in a makeshift holdup under the admin building; not even animal activists will like to see animals being held up under such conditions as it is under the admin building. The lads there are like zoo animals; always hanging on the bars, calling out on visitors, lawyers and anybody walking into the admin building to throw them a dollar. It’s the norm in panama (keep and treat them like savages and wild animals that they are) #Prisoners!

My intervention earlier today has sent a clear message to the Jamaican lad on his intimidating lifestyle, he calls himself #BadMan, but a coward like a cornered rat!

No football, thus the tension, please come Friday and come football to keep us calm and behaved, at least for the duration of the world cup, then we can go back and live as we use to!

I’m connected back to another wifi, but not sure how many of us are on the line as signal is very weak, so I’m back to using my signal spot; the most are there to make calls, but I use it for my surfing and other internet activities and downloading.

Getting very hot, water is sporadic, another Jamaican in charge of our water line, gives today and the next day, one is cut off. Good thing, we always enough for each day’s use; like the biblical manna, enough for the day!

Thurs, 3 July 2014
Another early day, brew a cup of green tea and rushed upstairs to get the early surf. Being our weekly headcount, there won’t be much people upstairs as some will make an early stash of their phones.

Back, downstairs, dressed up to workout under the weather while the count goes on. Phones stashed and filed out like others. Use the time outside for a proper body-weight workout, also worked with the monkey bars behind the pavilion; dips and inverse rows. Did some few sprinting, have to up my cardio, by running more or jumping rope, stopped the later because of my sore back.

The headcount went well and nothing surprising from the cops, thus, no search and none missing, everyone was accounted for.

Back inside, being Thursday, the gym will be very scanty as many were cut off from their sleep, gone back to sleep; lazy prisoners. Well, it’s the system that should be blame for creating laziness inside prison.

Went straight to the weights, hitting shoulders and abs; still recovering, thus, I’m still careful with what weight I handle and how I train. Had a wonderful workout, #HIIT #Hardcore and excruciating; rounded up with abs exercises, hanging legs and knees raise. Few lads joined me, and we did well. Satisfied!

Done and inside, the lads are busy with nothing; talking and arguing over irrelevant issues. At least something to while away one’s time, everyone just gotta be busy with something.

Made a protein shake with peanut butter; being #Lockup and left with limited or nothing has taught me to use whatever available for the best results; My protein shake are always bit and bits of what is sold here; peanuts, peanut butter, raisins, oats, fresh ginger, lemons, oranges, carrots, cinnamon, pineapple,milk, chocolate, eggs and honey (always get that through my consul). The fruits, I get as much when available and even coconuts.

Signal is terrible, even on the wifi, we are about 10 linked to it, most are just chatting with it, while one or two are busy downloading porns to build up their porn stashes from different sites and music from tubidy.

Talking of porn stashes, far back, every man’s porn stash would consist of German or Hungarian porn magazines and few from America, hidden away from prying eyes and no sharing. But, thanks technology we now stash porn digitally and having so much at the same time, sometimes, so much with no memory space to save them, and we tend to share our porns; that’s like sharing one’s woman ;-)

My old cellmate who’s suffering from proper high BP is one of the few with thousands of porns; pictures and videos. We have jokingly told him, his high blood pressure is a result of viewing too much porn which his fragile and old heart can’t handle. The last time he gave me his phone to help sort out his collections in different folders, I was in awe at the stash the old man has. How he convinced so many women on the outside to send him naked pictures of themselves and they did. He wanted me to create folders for each of his ladies, had to adviced him, keeping pictures with their faces and their hot body parts together is not a good idea, if the phone is taken during search, and the memory card falls into a smart and wrong hand; then, those women will be online for the world to download and feast on them ;-)

Most of us will sneak into our porn stashes late at night in the secret of our bunks, hammock or wherever one finds to lay his head, but my old cell mate is busy 24/7 flipping through pages upon pages of his collections. Done with pictures, he dives into videos, since he rarely moves from where he sits and watches his groceries business, he has just developed gout like one of the new lad, whose gout got him bedridden for days.

My mate had my masseur massage his swollen joints, glad the man told him to be moving around. I’m surprise at the sheer amount of laziness here; there are older inmates, who don’t train in the gym, but by 4am every morning, in their trainers, they can be seen walking round the passages and they do that for two good hours. These few men, do that every day, some are with diabetes, high blood pressure or other ailments that comes with old age. But they don’t want to go down with them, I have told my cell mate to join them, but he’s too lazy to get up by that time and do anything. We have our jokes, the lads always talk of his porn-addiction and his thousand collections; jokingly, we do ask him if his old heart can handle such enormous collection of nakedness.

Well, they say, it’s what we like and indulge in most that will eventually kill us. Hope his love for porn won’t kill his fragile old heart ;-)

Fri, 4 Jul 2014
Woke up early and went through my daily rituals and also dressed up to hit patio; wasn’t allowed outside, thus, this cop won’t be getting nothing from me when he’s leaving.

Signal was ok this morning, so did what I have to do in my bed.

#WorldCup2014 is back today as Colombia takes on the host Brazil, it will be a tough moment, both for the players and for us on the inside; 90% of foreign inmates in Panama are Colombians. Thus, in my pavilion and the other two pavilions housing foreign inmates, Colombians are the most.

The gym is not seeing much inmates lately; it’s either due to the world cup fever or they are becoming lazy. The few who turns up are just the regular ones who are serious and dedicated to what they are doing.

My mates joined me, and we got into the day’s business; #HIIT #Hardcore #Chest adding #Triceps. Started with warming up with body-weight lunges and stretching, pull-ups. Then benchpress, inclined and declined; on the last set, the catholic priest arrived for our weekly mass; got the faithfuls out, as they brought out chairs and all that will be used during the sort service.

Those who were coming out late for workout were disappointed, some tried going outside to do whatever they can under the weather. For me, done and out ;-)

Inside, rushed through my postworkout meal and showered.

The pavilion was getting ready for today’s match; Colombia vs. Brazil, the pavilion was a sea of yellow as the lads adorned yellow T-Shirts in support of their country. Apparently, conspicuous yellow is the colour of the prison; upon being called up for visit, lawyer’s, doctor’s or consular visit, an inmate wears yellow T-shirt or even to school. It’s more or less the prison uniform; but to be acquired by the inmate, thus we have them in different designs and quality. Mostly the locals go for tight-fitting ones, while the rich foreigners opts for designers one like Polo, Hilfiger, and other designers name, never knew Armani make yellow shirts, and if they know now, that their yellow shirts are favourite amongs prisoners, hummmmmm! Wondering what they will be thinking.

But, today’s yellow was just Colombia and for Colombians alone. Two Brazilians inmates were drawn into placing bets with many Colombians, I also placed $5 with my lil gay cell mate; from those who know him on the outside, it’s being confirmed, that he’s gay, he apparently lived with another man, well, don’t know why he’s trying to get back into the closet when he’s already out??? Doesn’t bothers me what he is or what he’s not, what annoyes me is his dirty habits; gays are supposed to be clean fellas, but not him…..Grrrrrrrrrg!

Loads of invitations from some mates to drink with them as the match began, decided to stay in my cell. My wine should be ready, took out a gallon and the lads got some litres of liquor out also. And there goes the much-awaited match; Brazil vs. Colombia.

At the end, Colombia lost to Brazil, the two Brazilians who placed bets with many went to their piggy banks smiling; one won about $140, won $20 from my old cellmate, apparently my old cellmate lost $40, another addiction after porn; gambling! He loves it with a passion; plays lottery and anything that comes with putting in money to either win money or something. #PrisonLife

Colombia lost sent a cold chills into the pavilion as the yellow sea became very quiet, if Colombia had won, there would have been cops around the pavilion for fear of a #PrisonBreak. Instead, it was the locals celebrating, seems they were all up for Brazil to win.

Despite the lost, the lads went on with what they had prepared and promised themselves they will do; booze, party and fiesta. Proper drinks had come in today for the fiesta. Those who can afford them, bought and drank, others kept low on our potent liquor and moonshine. Those who wanted some light, came for my wine, had a bit as I want to be out on Saturday for a short bouts of workouts.

My gay mate paid me, but decided to get himself pissed; what will later become a two-days, non-stop fiesta for him has just begun. Started from my cell and he took it outside; loads of invites for him to drink with them. At a point, he started wailing and crying, how his beloved team has lost. But then, like others before him who had played with alcohol; it wasn’t football anymore but more personal things started showing up in his speeches. Talked about his dead mum, sister and brother, we had to let him be. Heard the lad left Colombia for Panama about 27 years ago and hadn’t return, not even for a visit. Guess so much has happened within those 27 years which he only hears. For the first time in his those years, he’s living among his people in a very large community (Prison) and being here has sort of taken him aback. And whenever he adds a little too much of alcohol, its brings out does buried and hidden feelings. He cried for hours, then went about drinking, dancing and entertaining the lads. But, our eyes were on him. Once in a while he comes into the cell to pour himself a little more of his fuel; wouldn’t know if someone gifted him a line to snort, what I didn’t see, can’t tell. But at the end of the day; his wailing and lamentations were on us in the cell. The lad sat all night allowing his mind to go walkabouts into memory lane, bringing back things that should have been left lying and sleeping.

Sat, 5 Jul 2014
Like other days, first to rise, went through my morning rituals, and dressed up for an early morning workout.

General cleaning and washing of the cell; moved my stuffs, so whoever is cleaning will have his way.

With my tea, went outside, the inmate on the door didn’t want to let me out, but after letting his compatriot out before me, I attacked him for his nepotism. He eventually let me out. Spent about an hour outside, stretching, running, brisk-walking and doing body-weight exercises. And also enjoyed the freshness of the warmth sun and fresh air. The cop on duty eventually called us in for another group to go outside.

Inside, the gym was empty; tempted to hit the weights. Went for an all-body #HIIT #Hardcore workout, hitting my upper and lower bodies with compound exercises. Brief but intensive and rewarding. Back in to prepare for #TeamHolland vs. Costa Rica match.

Football fever has hit us again, dutch inmates here aren’t much, but we are loud when the time comes. Few supported me, Los Ticos (what Costa Ricans are called in Spanish) kept us on the edge of our seats as they held us to a goalless full time and thirty minutes extra time. #TeamHolland dominated the entire match, but Los Ticos were just to hard to break, the god of football was on their side, but whatever luck they had left them during the penalty shootouts.

#KoningKrul #TimKrul Dutch and Newcastle goalkeeper was the man of the match, though the Chinese-looking linesman on the left whose flag couldn’t stay put stole that medal from him; majority of us awarded him man of the match for his part in the game.

The match started well and ended well; the dutch team roared like the Lions they are, sending Los Ticos home and setting a match with Argentina for semifinal. It will be war and we are ready! Too bad, the queen is an argentine! No problem, the Dutch know how to do ‘em Argentines (says the King himself).

All morning, there’s been party down the passage in one of the cells, my gay cellmate was invited to drink and entertained; had his field day, free drinks, music and jokes to keep him going. Every head that went through that part of the passage was bathed in flour; Latino custom, flours or white powder is thrown on the celebrant and sometimes eggs are added. Whoever came up with such birthday tradition, probably didn’t know, with extra ingredients added, one could bake a proper birthday cake ;-)

Since yesterday, heard of proper liquor in the pavilion, and my wine is ready to be sampled; few cups to the lads around, they loved it and wanted more, but I need to recover my cost first.

The lads in the cell took to drinking, well not everyone of them, just the young lad with his new mate who bought my pharmacist-cellmate’s bunk. They drank all night, until a third lad joined them. Music and chatting all night.

Managed to plugged my ears with my collections of classical music as I was beginning to feel feverish and with sore throat. Wasn’t long before slept caught up with me and snatch me away from the reality of our lives on the inside.

Sun, 6 Jul 2014
Sunday, my real rest day from my cruelly workouts. And always the day I try to sleep longer than other days. Woke up around 7am, same time the old grocer woke up and behold the mess that was made last night by the revellers. Empty plastic bottles of powerade (a good mix with our poten liquor), pot of noddles soup (black Colombians, in-between their drinking session or at the end always opt for hot soup, back home it would have been fresh fish soup as they coastal dwellers), plates, bowls and spoon were scattered everywhere. And the young lad who is sleeping off his hangover was supposed to clean today.

Looking up on the high bunk, he and his mate laid wasted, since he does help me with my cleaning, decided to clear up the mess, wash the dishes, set a pot of water on the stove for my tea and eventually clean the shower room and toilet. Showered and get ready for an early day.

The fever that started gradually yesterday, is taken its toll on me and my throat is friggin sore, can’t even swallow saliva. It’s going to be a long and boring day for me. Got started with my self-medication, hope it works.

The day went very slow, had to get back in bed, and that was it: bedridden all day, only got up to use the loo, glad I had custard, as that was the only thing I could it. Made me some, had it for Brunch and dinner; tried making it rich and nutritious as much as I can, added peanut butter ;-)

Attacked the fever with paracetamol and sore throat with ampicilin. The day went at a snail pace, but made it through the day. Showered twice, had several cups of green tea.

Spent all day in the cell, despite the heat in the cell, couldn’t feel it, as my body was hotter than the cell.

The drinking and partying has ceased, the lads are getting ready for tomorrow’s visit. Another round of food and whatever allowed or smuggled in will flood the pavilion.

Wouldn’t know if my self-medication is working, but by tomorrow, should be able to find out. Tried reading, didn’t work, so back to the only thing working now and that seems to be sleep and sleep.

Mon, 7 Jul 2014
Another early day, woke up starving, used the loo, went through my daily rituals. Felt a bit better and relieved. What a short spell with fever and sore throat. The fever has gone, but my throat is still sore with thick phlegm. Should get better in the course of the day.

After a cup of tea, made another bowl of hot custard, served as an ideal breakfast to begin my starving day.

Dressed up before other woke up, and being visit day, they should be getting soon to get ready for today’s visit.

The gym was scanty, decided to do something light, but a #HIIT workouts that will get me sweating. #Chest was the best option, members of my group who weren’t out for visit joined me for an excruciating workouts. Rounded up with stretching and abs.

Back in, my three mates who went out for visit were in with all their goodies, but only one brought in cooked food to share with the rest of us; the rest only got what they will eat alone. Well, as with every other thing about life, we learn new things everyday and reminded of old ones as well. I’m beginning to know what to do with my money.

Showered and felt very much better; but still kept on with my medication, especially the antibiotics for the sore throat.

The lad who brought in food, warmed it up, boiled rice and shared it amongst everyone. Even the ones who went out with him got some. Well, such is life and life in prison.

Today went pretty fast; my hitting the gym sort of made that possible. Forming habits is as easy and doing those habits when the urge comes, but breaking those habits is the million dollars question; hard as #PrisonBreak. But when that habit is a good one, then it serves a good end, breaking is also will be friggin difficult, and that’s my experience with my daily workouts. Since it has become part of me and my life, a day without workout is long, and can be very boring. And also keeps me away from some inmates who just can’t keep their mouths shut; out of sight is out of mind, how I wished it’s always like that, but not in prison, here, once you turn your back, then they lazy-ass gossiping begins.

Spent part of the evening upstairs with my mate, felt very much better. So much is going on inside and within the pavilion, well, if one has the ears to listen and time to waste, there’s so much to keep one entertained. Glad, I try not to give my time to what’s happening in and around here and if it’s not about me.

Back in my cell, and bit late, the lads were snoring their lives away. Took a late shower before hitting my bunk. Wifi signal was good and having slept all day on Sunday and an earlier nap this afternoon, sleep wasn’t forthcoming. Thus, decided to stay up and do an all-nighter. Read and surfed, downloaded new mp3 files, magazines and eBooks, now I really want to get an eBook reader or a tablet, maybe a 8inch one with telephone capability also. But first have to scout for a bargain, then sell my phone which has really served me well; had it more than two years now, survived many brutal searches and still working, well I kept and used it well.

Spent the night online, brewed me a late night cup of tea, and finally slept around 5am on Tuesday morning. With that, I know I’m not hitting the gym today, can’t punish my body, even if my mind wants the workout, gotta allow the body to recover.

Tues, 8 Jul 2014
First match of the semi final is on today, still eating semi-solid, though my sore throat is much better today.

Not working out, means staying indoors most part of the day. My mate checked on me to see who I’m doing; good as gold!

The pavilion is prepared for #BRAGER semi final match later in the day.

We’re still using the meats from monday’s visit; is usually last till Tuesday or Wednesday at most. After then, we are on our own; eggs or whatever anybody wants to buy for himself.

Placed a bet for a 3litre orange fizzy drink with a Brazilian before the start of the match. He was sure of his team and I was certain of the German machines crushing them. But not the humiliation Brazil suffered when the match ended.

The match began and got us all seated as we enjoyed the match, many placed bets for Brazil to win, some totalling $200. Wasn’t a nice feeling when the final whistle was blown and Brazil went down on their knees with 7-1 on the scoreboard. Defeated and humiliated, a host and a super football nation to be humbled, humiliated and shaken to its core is not what many were expecting, but that’s what happened. Brazilians are forever humbled.

Wed, 9 Jul 2014
Another early day for me, went through what has become my morning rituals. No matter what time I sleep; always the last to sleep. I always wake up before the others. Guess, a habit formed when I used to wake up early to get to the signal spot when the passage was still ok. Brush my teeth, set water on the stove for a cup of green tea, and hit upstairs.

Didn’t spent much time upstairs as I planned hitting the gym furiously today.

When I got downstairs, the lads were getting up and getting about their daily activities, if only they have one. But, there’s one that I know of, and they are good at it; talking, arguing and gossiping. Good for them and for the system.

Dressed up and hit the gym, took a cup of gatorade, well not my ideal drink, but since I bought the powder form, I now make my energy drink, cheaper than buying bottled ones from the groceries. Wouldn’t know if the lad who sold it to me for twenty bucks ripped me. Everybody here is busy trying to ripped the other man. Even one’s cellmates wouldn’t do anything without thinking of what profit would be made for doing that favour; it’s all jungle, kill or being killed.

The gym was packed and busy, went about my day’s business like others, until our Brazilian mate walked in and got the booed by others as he bored the humiliation of Brazil to Germany. When Brazil beat Colombia, he was all over the pavilion and actually won a lot of dough from bets he placed with the Colombians. But this time around, was his turn to pay, and also receive some boooing.

But then, Santa Claus ‘the only sikh in the village’ took the shaming thing too personal and to a different level; once a cellmate with the Brazilian, until the Brazilian and others kicked him out for being a difficult person or being too dirty for their liking; the old eats fresh garlic everyday to keep his cholesterol and heart on check, and being an overcrowded place, plus the heat, they shouldn’t expect him to be without some body odour; we are friggin sweating, another reason I walk around with a hand towel. Pheeeeeeew!

Santa went to far and got physical with the Brazilian lad after the lad told him to give him a blow job; such words are what one hear daily here, sometimes, it’s better to let it slide, but not many can brave to let such words slide and Santa is one of them. He threw an old punch from his flappy hands at the lad, who responded by pushing him around. Others, as always were watching, but seeing the unmatched pair, I talked the lad out of fighting the old cow, but Santa wouldn’t let it be, still wanted to fight some more. Well, he did take some boxing lessons from the professional boxer here, maybe he believes he’s ready to take anybody. Wish him all the lucks.

The president of the pavilion who was also training in the gym and witnessed everything, finally got Santa and his stuffs thrown out. Where he stayed outside all day, eventually was allowed in as no cops came for him, to get him transferred to another pavilion, preferably pavilion 16, mostly for the elderly and foreigners, in La Joyita, our sister prison.

Finally rounded up my #HIIT #Back and #Arms workout, intensive and excruciating, but rewarding.

In to prepare for #TeamHolland take on #Argentina for a place in the final. Showered and placed a bet of $20 with a Colombian.

Rushed through my postworkout meal as I was late for the match, eventually joined the rest of the pavilion. That was football, like they say in Africa; “When two elephants battles, it’s the grass that suffers”, two football giants battles for a place, it’s us who had placed our bets on them that are crying ;-)

The match got us (The Dutch inmates) on the edge of our seats, as we watched and wait for a goal, but nothing happened, all our changes were made, we went into extra time and then penalty shootouts, without #TimKrul, I know we are gone. And that was it, my $20 gone. And it was my turn to get booed and catcallings, but I was ready for them ;-)

These and many others crazy things keep us going and functional, if the pavilion was not an open system, there would have been loads suicides, but then, an open prison system also puts many in harm way, as confrontations are very rampant and easy for inmates to get into brawl. One can easily walk into a cell of another and let it all out; bloody and fatal.

Anyway, our boys did so well and I believe Holland will be very proud of them; a tiny nation but mighty in their courage. Now my alliance will switch to #TeamGermany to bring the cup back to Europe, moreover not to give the Barcelona fans here anything to make them shout ;-) #Leo #Leo #Leo!

Well, despite the lose of today, an inmate offered me a can of miller’s Lite, was bad, but refreshing as I mixed it with juice from fresh lemon and loads of ice; something I badly need to refreshed. Same lad, was selling proper liquor, those with benjamins will fork out about $200 for a bottle of rum. Not me, as I know what to do with my dough, and I prefer my prison-brewed wine, as I know the content as I deemed it healthier ;-)

Within the walls of prison lies miseries and mysteries yet to be discovered and uncovered. It takes one keeping his eyes down and reading between even lines and hearing what that has not been said to decipher and discover those hidden things many will try to coat with their smiles and vague actions.

Sometimes, the truth about someone comes out when he’s out of sight; dead, released, transferred.

That was the case of one of the pavilion most elderly and well-respected inmate, did couple of years and got time reduced through work time and school time. And in a rush to be released, but little did he knew that the long and expansive arms of the law was waiting to swallow him up like the biblical Jonah was swallowed by a large fish or sea monster.

That was the case of our elderly inmate, who earned lot of respect from many as he walked with an air of righteousness, but then, this is prison, even those walking around with Bibles 24/7 still harbours some little secrets of theirs.

The old hand finally got his release, but before that and while waiting, he had trouble feeding. Had to eat with my mate upstairs, who didn’t mind him eating with him. And he also ran into trouble waters with me over a mattress that was left in his care for me; a compatriot of his who once lived in Holland, told him to give me his mattress, but the old lad sold it along with everything the man left behind. Heart matters!

He finally gave me another mattress, after I attacked him verbally in front of many people and reminded him his words, the day man left “you will get the mattress when I leave”.

Well, he left and was hauled to the immigration to sort him out, over there, he tried buying his way out into the streets; knowing fully well what awaits him back home in his home country #Colombia.

One can run, far and wide, but one can’t hide from the long arms of law and thanks to technology which has made the world such a small community, something old criminals don’t know. That, by punch of buttons no-one is hidden as he thought he was.

Our old lad who was one a #Bossman of an arms-running gangs; exchange coke for arms with their counterparts in Panama in the eighties. Along the line of duty and business, toes were stepped on and heads rolled, leaving many families and the law to hunt for them for justice. But then, young and armed, with blood hot as volcanic larva, nobody dares him and his group. They did what they gotta do and went away with it, no confrontation as Colombia then was all wild wild west! Who got the guns, got the might.

Years passed, somethings are forgotten, but the hurts will never forget as they cry for justice. And one of the slained was the mayor of his little town. Long story short; while serving time in panama, two members of his eighties crew were caught, judged and sentenced to twenty eight years of imprisonment in Colombia. And he was sentenced to a prison term of thirty years in absentia. Upon release, panama finally delivered him to Colombia who sent him to a maximum #Lockup in #Bogota. Despite spending money at the immigration to be released in panama. The wardens there knew his case, they just collected his money and leave him to his oncoming fate.

The old man should be in his early fifties, thus upon release, if he survives colombia’s notorious prison, will be one old grumpy, crooked old man with prison tales to tell and share with those who will care to listen to him. Well, that’s justice served! And there end his story!

On hearing and reading about this old lad, who was one of our most respected inmate here. I believe few knew about him and his past. His past, like those of many of us; can they be atoned for? Can one’s past be forgiven and forgotten? Humanly, one can try to forgive, religion teaches us, one can ask for divine forgiveness. But with the law, it’s a different ball game; restitution is served when justice is done. The law doesn’t forgive, neither does it forget, it punishes and does that very hard and well. If you survived your past, you can only build upon the ruins of those pasts, just like the vibrant cities of Europe were all built upon ruins of fallen and past empires and civilisations.

For our man, time has ran out on him, what is there to build? Guess nothing, his second time in the joint will be time to atone for all and prepare himself for the great beyond as it beckons.

For the rest of the day, nothing to do than read, play candy crush and allow my mind go walkabouts to memory land :-)

Thu, 10 Jul 2014
Another early day, and our weekly headcount day. Up as usual, prepared for the day, stashing bits and pieces. Dressed up to make use of the time outside for a quick burst of cardio and body-weight exercises.

Went upstairs briefly for mobile signal, then came the call. Had to stash my phones upstairs with a mate; risky but no choice as I can make it downstairs to stash with the lads.

Outside, the weather was good; started with a good stretching, squats, lunges, brisk-walking and then few lapse on the field and then few power sprints. I definitely need more of these!

Finally went behind the building to workout with the monkey bar; inverted rows, dips and pull-ups. All got me pumped and ready for the day. Should have been enough but later continued in the gym when the headcount was over.

The gym was scanty as many literally went back to bed to continue with their sleep. How cozy prison has become, turning men to douchebags. The system is not really helping anyone; innocent or guilty and not even the society will be spared from the consequences of prisons sending unprocessed and unchanged men back to the streets.

Had a quick all-body workouts, #HIIT #Hardcore! Rounded up and in for a quick shower. Our aquaman, is busy selling water to those who will pay him cash. Thus, our tanks are rarely full, but enough to take us through each day. #LivingWithoutWater #LWW?????

The pastor from #EpafrasNL came visiting today, the lads left without calling me. One of those things. Was mad at them, but then what will I do, nada! At least, they brought me licorice candies and a pen. The man of the cloth came with good news; the Lord’s word and nothing from Den Haag (Man’s news), hope for much, but expect nothing and learn to live by those factual rules.

Nothing much today, Saturday’s #BraNed 3rd place match and Sunday’s #ArgGer final is the only thing important now for the lads. Will be looking for someone who will place a bet with me, I will be going for Germany.

Fri, 11 Jul 2014
Up and about, dressed up and will be hitting the gym for another round of brutal assault. The rest of the pavilion is waking up for another weekend. It’s been a busy and hectic week, despite some leading a sedentary lifestyle, everyone is always looking forward to weekend, as it gives them more reason to drink and party.

Prepared oatmeal and ate few spoons before leaving for the gym. The gym was bare, some are either having a head start for the weekend or just lazy.

Went about my day’s business, a #HIIT #Hardcore Chest, and all-arms workout. Added abs and other body-weight exercises; rope jumps, push-ups, and goblet squats to fire up my legs. Rounded early as the catholic priest could break in any moment for our weekly mass.

Rushed in, bought ice for a cold gatorade drink and ate the last of my oatmeal before hitting the shower for a cold shower. Lately, our aquaman hasn’t been giving us enough to fill up our tanks, he’s likely busy with those paying for water. But we always get enough for each day’s use. And the lads are learning to manage with whatever we are given.

Not much to do today; apparently, there’s never anything to do, one has to create and discover his own piece of whatever he wants to keep him busy himself. There’s so much to choose from; group activities like gambling, contact sports, gossiping and arguing over irrelevant issues, all fall under group activities, drinking with buddies Or individual activities, where one does without the consent or participation of another inmate, like reading, chatting, watching porn and flipping through porn photos in the comfort of one’s bunk with curtain fully drawn, or even sleeping. Well, there’s always something to do to keep one busy in a place like this, some can sit on a spot, pondering and having a mental walkabouts on what will become of them and their fate after time-done.

Well, knackered and out, decided upon an individual activity; vitamin sleep! Hit my bed for a quick power nap, something I really needed. Slept for a while before waking to eat lentils which came on the lunch cart, bought three eggs, fried and had them with the lentils.

For dinner, decided to make another bowl of oatmeal, added peanut butter for the extra protein.

As always, I prefer individuality, did some reading and listening to music. And bits of writing, just about anything to keep me busy take me away from the stress of life on the inside.

Hit the bed early as it’s our general cleaning tomorrow and gotta be up as early as possible.

Sat, 12 Jul 2014
Woke up early, messages flashing on my phone, the wifi connection is a blessing sent from above; literally the routers and modem are all hanging high above the pavilion, thus, they are truly blessings sent from above ;-)

Went about my day’s chores before the others will wake up; water on the stove for a cup of green tea, should be having Earl Grey tea with milk later in the day, but the green tea kickstarts my day. Removed all my stuffs from the floor to make way for whoever is washing the cell today, took the novel I’m reading and armed with my phones and cuppa green tea, climbed upstairs. The lad cleaning is the laziest in the cell, lives with us, but rarely want to be part of the cell. Rarely contribute to the cell upkeep, doesn’t eat with us, pay a cook to get him his food, well, so long he doesn’t cross my path, we are very much ok!

It took him ages to round up with the washing and cleaning. But while upstairs, I prepared beans to be cooked later. When I finally got downstairs, cooked black-eyes peas and made vegetable stew, popped in the boiled eggs that came on the breakfast cart. That was my brunch and dinner. Lately haven’t been bothered to check what’s coming on our prison food cart and I have been living on cereals. Hope should start proper cooking next week. Maybe it’s just the world cup thing or maybe it’s because our lil gayly guy is doing the cooking. The old lad invited or brought him to the cell, but then, we didn’t know from what cloth the lad was cut from. But soon, like they say ‘time will tell’ his true colours shown; lad is friggin dirty, spits on the shower room floor, leaves tissues here and there and stores food in different bowls for days. And now he is cooking, hell no, ain’t eating anything he cooks. I rather pick what comes from the prison food cart as I don’t know who’s cooking them. They could as well be blind or stinking, since I don’t know, I can afford to eat whatever comes. But, not what my cellmate cooks, after seeing him picked his nose and then shove same hand into the pot of rice or clean up his sweat right above his pot of stew, then wiped his nose, clean his hand on his dirty shorts and then back to slicing vegetables. Naaaaaiiiiii, not me, will stick to my oatmeal and beans, wldn’t kill me. What he’s doing will friggin kill someone who knows what he’s doing.

Finally, the moment, the pavilion is prepared for #WorldCup2014 third place match between #Bra and #Ned.

Not working out today, decided to have my hair cut and did some cleaning of my bunk, can’t get my bunk to be like the others, got so much books and nowhere to keep them. Gotta live with them!

The 3rd place match wasn’t shown live on tv, thus, we plugged in our earphones as we listened to radio commentary and thank God for our smartphones, most has got FM radio, the match went fine, as Brazil received another blow; losing to Holland and incurring ten goals in two matches at home. That’s history and a very bad one, like our ongoing prison experiences, one dark history that we will all live with.

In celebration of my compatriots victory, we burst open a gallon of my wine, had a few with some mates. But my mates wanted a little more, then cooked soup to help with the hangover. Soup goes with drinking here, but most seems to throw up everything, I think, it’s a matter of timing, knowing when to stop drinking and go for a hot bowl of soup, but the lads seems to drink till stupor, then opt for a bowl of hot soup. The stomach can’t handle it.

Had an early night, while others continued with whatever they have to take them through the long boring night of prison life.

Sun, 13 Jul 2014
Officially my rest day. Despite always being alert and conscious of where one is, Sunday is one day I try to get enough sleep. Woke up around 7am, which is bloody late for me, as I’m used to waking up very early.

Set up a pot of water on the stove, while I visited the loo and went through my monotonous morning rituals. Then, the rest of the cell, gradually wake up to join me. Turned on my music, had paid $20 to fix a speaker my mate burnt, now it’s literally mine, started the day with some gospel music. The lads did enjoyed the music, though barely understood the lyrics.

Breakfast was cereals and for the rest of the day, had oatmeal and cereals, topping them up with peanuts or peanut butter and banana. No real food today, but what I have is ok with me, my cellmates are always surprised at my weird diet. I always tell them, I eat what my body need, not what I grow up eating; which might not really be healthy. Them, not ready to change; one man’s meat is another man’s poison.

Feeling feverish, the pavilion is down with flu, almost everyone is sneezing, coughing and running to my pharmacist-cellmate for whatever cure he has for them, and the lad has ran out of medicine. He’s waiting for his warden friend who brings in things for him to haul in his next supplies. Hope soon, as my nostrils are becoming blocked, glad still got some paracetamol left.

Finally, #WorldCup2014 is coming to an end today as #Germany takes on #Argentina in the final. Placed a $10 bet on Germany with the president of the pavilion. It will be a tight match, but I hope Germany takes the cup back to Europe.

Majority of the inmates are in support of Argentina, it’s a continental war; Europe vs. The Americas! Germany might not be my favourite team, but wouldn’t want to see Argentina lift the world cup, after all the bad tactics and rubbish football they played against many teams. Most especially, against my team #TeamHolland, many faults which we were not awarded.

And the match begins……. kept us on the edge of our seats, both teams are equally matched, the Germans are young and ready to play nonstop for three hours. I want Germany to win, and make my day better with a $10 win.

Finally, the used up the full time and nothing happened, went into extra time, and on the second fifteen minutes extra time, Germany netted a goal that saw them lifting the world cup for the fourth time and also won me a tenner.

There were many wins and also many loses,

Went back to my bed as there’s
Rest day, cereals and oatmeal all day
Blocked nostrils, full blown out flu in the pavilion
Germany won the world cup and I won $10.

World cup has finished, but our lives in the slammer continues, which brings us back to were we started from; monotonous routines everyday as we battles the odds of survival.

But, the only annoying thing about the world cup and which further proves that #Fifa is a corrupt outfit, was the awarding of the best player of the tournament to #Messi. Even the latinos here all agreed that Messi never and didn’t deserved it. Well, it just showed how corrupt our beloved football has become. What happened to Robben, Muller, Kroos, James and others whose outstanding performance, Messi couldn’t matched? Friggin corrupt football!

After all said and done, we are back to what we do best; talking! The lads were all in groups, dissecting what and how the football should have been. Put men together with nothing to do, then you know, #MenCanTalk!

Mon, 14 Jul 2014
Another early day and rushed through my morning rituals.

The door was opened for an early patio, the footballers went out and many others joined. The field was filled up with inmates, either walking, jogging or just chatting, but also enjoying the weather and refreshing early morning breeze.

Without water in the cell, it will be a hard day, though I have my reserves, but still need what I will use later after my workout. Other cells with pumps had water, so I fetched three tanks for my personal use later today.

Told my mates to go get some, but none were ready to move, hope our water comes and aquaman will give us some.

Hit the gym, picked out things I will use for the day, but a Venezuelan inmate who probably woke up on the wrong side today, just couldn’t keep his mouth shut. Had to leave the gym and hit the fields before our confrontation become something else.

Outside, the weather was superb, went into a quick burst of cardio; stretches, running, inverted rows and dips.

When I got in, the lad was gone. Went about my workout with my group, two new lads joined us, and got no idea about anything or what to do in the gym. Put them through the basics, and seems to be fast learners. Hope they stay and not run away like many before them.

We opt for an all-body #HIIT #Hardcore workout, with emphasis on chest. Also torched biceps, and did some pull-ups and lunges.

Done and knackered, when I got in, there was no water, but got me three tanks, used two as I had extra laundries to wash. Bit tensed in the cell, over the water issue, as I told them to fetch water and nobody did anything.

Water finally came, but not enough for the day’s use, which got me shouting orders, that we should use what have now wisely and cautiously as this could be the beginning of something greater.

Took a short power nap after shower, was what I needed to fix me back, my masseur came and worked on my back. And he also massaged my mate who has developed gout from sitting all day; chatting and washing soft and hard porn videos. As es la vida!

Meanwhile, had gotten ox lungs which my mate paid for. After taking a power nap, cooked it and made stew to be eaten with white rice. White rice, which my pharmacist-cellmate cooked; fried white rice, and hard to chew.

Shared the food amongst us, and others whom the rice wasn’t enough had the stew with the meat inside. And these ones decided to cook macaroni, then add the stew to the drained macaroni. They all enjoyed their meal. And everyone satisfied. Seems we are now cooking on our own, everyone does what he likes. I’m very much ok with my peanut butter, can literally add it to anything; rice, bread, boiled potatoes, oatmeal, cornflakes or cold oats and the taste is always superb. But my mates just want to chew meat and not ready to buy.

Not much for the day, like the caveman who sits before his bonfire and gazes into the unknown future, so are we, men befallen by our infamous deeds; sitting, sweating, swearing, and gazing into our unknowns.

Tue, 15 Jul 2014
Another early day, one day at a time. Early as other days. And done with what needed be done with.

Dressed up to hit the fields, early, you make it outside before the boxers who now have their permit signed by the various offices, but then, their going out depends on the cop on duty.

Made it outside, run and sprint, stretched and body-weight exercises before the cop called me in. Gym was packed, some days, the lads just wanna do it, other days, life is hitting them hard and bad. Loved the energy in the gym. New hands joining my group, we do what others are doing, but #HIIT and #Hardcore, which makes some old school jealous. None of us are juicing, I teach them to make good use of whatever we have at our disposal; train hard, eat healthy. The lads aren’t rich like some here, but they manage to survive on what meagre diet they can.

We had a ass-bursting shoulders and lite legs; lunges, deadlift, dumbbell squats. Went heavy on shoulder press and shrugs. Rounded up with abs.

Another search scare today, seems something sinister is coming, well what can be more sinister than finding oneself in one of latin america’s notorious prison, where inmates take selfie brandishing assault rifles and all sorts of professional weapons and crude ones.

After the stashing and waiting and nothing happened, we later found out, that new and highly volatile local inmates were brought in. They were escorted in by special police, and had to have the entire prison lock down, zero movement, no even the civilian workers were allowed out of their offices. What a waste of human resources and time.

They lads had to be protected from the various gangs running the prison, and also protect those gangs from them; prison is always a dormant volcano waiting to erupt and explode. Riot is always lying in wait, any little internal or external stimuli can sets things in motion negatively. Thus, cops does whatever it takes to prevent it, even by giving in to prisoner’s demands and pleasing the inmates; turning deaf ears and closed eyes to what is going on right under their noses.

Had the rest of last night macaroni with one avocado, bought six earlier today, whenever they come in, I try to feast on it. Better thing to spend my money on.

For dinner, had rice with three fried eggs. There was no ice yesterday, but ice came in today and a lot. Can’t help sipping iced-lemon water all day. Glad these little things that makes life worth living here are allowed in; lemon, ice, eggs, oranges and few others. But we tend to have the worst more; candies, pork skin, and loads of fried food, even potatoes chips. One choses what he wants!

Spent most of the day in my cell and in my bunk, having signal from the comfort of one’s bunk is what anybody here will wish for, less contact with people, the better!

Had an early night, meaning I will be up sometime in the night.

And I did just that…..woke up by 2am on Wed, 16 Jul 2014.

My lil gay cellmate who like taking his talking into his sleep wouldn’t sleep quietly in his hammock, always talking and screaming; lad, has got a problem. So also many of of us!

Been up from that time till now; 05:07:00! The binmen are up and working, and the diabetic Dominican old man is out doing his daily walkabouts; walks round the passages till the day breaks or daylight! Determined and dedicated, unlike my cellmate who is down with high cholesterol, diabetes and is popping medications and no exercise of whatsoever.

Talking of diabetes, remind me of a Chinese inmate who was here, was massive and enormous, admitted into hospital and came back after months, lost loads of weights. He had an ulcer on his legs, so was always on trousers, even on visits. Finally was released, after forking out large sums of dough to his lawyer. Sadly, we just heard he died couple of days ago. Probably from complications related to his diabetes. Everyone will die, but how and when is what matters.

One gone, and no feelings, we have grown hard skin and set protective cover against empathy and anything that will make us feel unmanly. Guess, it what prison does to any weak or feeble person, grows him into a monster!

The misapplication of generalisation is a quick way to insult someone, or even start a fight.

Prison is an economy where businesses thrives, wars are waged and fought, truces, treaties and armistice are signed for peace to reign and these are also broken, and the war continues; a never-ending vicious circle of violence which begets violence and more violence until blood are spilled and lives snuffed away. Technically acceptable proposition in prison is when debts, favours are paid or rendered in acceptable or unacceptable manners; either willingly or by force. And these could be bartered, cash-payment or by the most cruelty forms; ass-payment or by life!

Thus, economic cooperation implied the existence of unwritten laws and rules or treaties that governs and guides every transactions within the walls of the prison. In our case; the locals control everything that comes from outside into the prison complex. The two foreign pavilions (Six and Eight) aren’t allowed to trade with each other, we must trade with the locals, and then, not all the locals. Pavilion 15, which houses the most dangerous locals don’t get long with the other locals, and since they are close to pavilion 8 (the second foreigner’s hold), they deal with Pav8, everything the foreigners in Pav8 desires has to be purchased from Pav15. While, we in Pav6 have direct access to other locals who are willing to trade with us; even goods nicked from amongst themselves are sent to us, but then, whoever buys anything from the locals should know better; never to be seen by the locals using that thing, as you will be marked for death.

With this, I rest my case and pray I have enough signal to get this updated on my blog asap!

“You cannot change your destination overnight, but you can change your direction overnight.”

Panama: Sun and beaches, private banks and drugs-money, Police everywhere, Mass Incarceration, yet crimes and unsolved murders abounds. #RIP #LisanneKris

Posted in Behind Bars in Panama on July 1, 2014 by doingtimeabroad

What is a man if he does not learn from his mistakes? What is humanity if it does not give him that chance? #ChanceForChange 

 

“What we have once enjoyed deeply we can never lose. All that we love deeply becomes a part of us.” – Helen Keller #SurvivingPrison #PrisonExperience 

 

The case of the two missing Dutch students from the beginning has opened something dark, covered and hidden about panama to the whole world.

 

Panama, a beautiful destination for holidaymakers, and others who want to hide money away from prying eyes of their capitalist government. And for others in search of cheap sex and drugs, panama has it all like a buffet dinner. 

 

But what panama has, which has been hidden to the outside world, is the increasing rate of crime in country, that has seen more police on the streets than in other bigger countries and the other thing are the vicious and heinous unsolved cases of missing people. The latter is one that has gotten too close for comfort as it’s happened to two younng dutch girls who came to panama with a mind of goodwill to learn and work; render service to improvished kids inn rural areas in the country. And they met their end in the same area. 

 

Prison is binary world; you are either banged up or not, a world where orderliness is kept in military precision, but in our case; it’s the opposite, a chaotic world with no rules of law, one where the norm is survival of most connected. 

 

Like simpleminded people struggling to decipher complex information, prisoners struggle through each day in oddities. Many will wake up each day not knowing or having any plan for the day, they get involved with whatsoever the next man does. Another’s life is their life! 

 

They say “Time meant nothing to prisoners”, we are supposed to have all the time at our disposal, but then, it comes and slipped away from us at lightening speed, that many can’t account for any useful achievement. We live in a time vacuum when our time stands still, many try to recreate and relived those precious moments, but then, like smoke and vapour gone too soon, those memories are all illusions that we wished and dreamed, we can hold onto forever. Any time used or unused, but gone can never be recovered, prison “time” is a like a wave, a true surfer waits for his to grab and glory in it; every prison, waits patiently for that opened window; to make a #PrisonBreak, strike or be struck, to start a new life. So many positive and negative thoughts are birthed within the walls of prisons.  What will become of those dreams, after prison time, remains but a mystery! 

 

Mon, 16 Jun 2014 

#WorldCup2014 is on and is keeping us calm and tranquil. Whenever a match is on, the pavilion becomes quiet like a graveyard ;-) 

 

Woke up, not feeling too good; bathing with rain water has probably given me cold, and the flu bug is spreading in the pavilion like wildfire and it comes with a badass cough. The cough is dry and many with strong, thick and dark coloured phlegm. The flu epidemic been a boom for my pharmacist-cellmate, as they are lining up for his drugs. Though, I have some that schat sent with the last pack she sent me; if I will need them. 

 

Woke up bit late today, around 5am, but laid back for thirty minutes before finally getting up and went through my early morning rituals, with my tea left for the signal spot. Few inmates were there before me, but mostly to make calls. Did what gotta be done before leaving my phone with my pal upstairs to keep up with my download. Left to prepare for gym. My last time in the gym was on Thursday last week, taken a long time to recuperate. Feeling stronger but still can’t risk doing any leg or back exercises that involves pulling or starting any movement from a death position; deathlifts, or any exercises that involves lifting. But pull-ups has been very helpful as it doesn’t put strain on my back. 

 

Hit Chest today and with intensity; flatbench, inclined and declined, added flyes, pull-ups and rounded up with biceps and triceps. My benchpress is improving as I can feel more strength, seems time-out from active training has helped developed my strength. 

 

Back in, water was everywhere as it drizzled a bit and our waterman decided to fill us up today. Did my laundries and showered, a protein shake was my postworkout meal, the lads cooked rice and canned sardine sauce, didn’t eat it, as I’m full and also feeling feverish. Won’t be working out tomorrow, my program from now till I’m fully recovered will be one day in, another out to recuperate or use the day off for yoga and walking the yard if the cop on duty will let me out. 

 

Football is on, but only on radio; we had to go back the old way and listened to radio commentary as Deutsch Machines trashed Portugal, that should get their Cockerell to crow, it was a whooping beating, that should get the Portuguese back to their drawing board. Another team the world was expecting something from them; Nigeria, performed badly against unknown Iranians in the world of football. Too bad for Nigeria, with all their top clubs-playing players, they couldn’t perform as expected of them. Another African country; Ghana is losing to #TeamUSA, and finally lost. Despite outplaying the Americans, they conceded two goals. Got me wondering if any African team will make it to second round. Hope they do! 

 

Meanwhile, upstairs by our signal spot, a very crazy inmate whose water tanks were damaged by protruding pieces of metals from the passage, finally tore parts of the passage off from their points; thus, we can’t access the signal spot anymore. Too bad, hope to find another way around there. Can’t stay without my morning signal access. 

 

If the welders don’t get the passage upstairs fixed, soon we won’t be able to walk or do anything upstairs and that will bad for those with water tanks that need to be filled on top of their cells. It will be too bad if they can’t get it done on time. 

 

20:06:07.. #Breaking; seems the search team searching for the two missing Dutch students have found something belonging to them and the search has changed routes as they are heading towards Bocas del Toro, my prayers are still with their families and hope our fears is not what awaits them at the end of this search party. 

 

Had to leave early to my cell and eat proper meal for the day; my gayly cell mate got his pals who loaded chunks of meats for him, but bringing them in his hands put me off from eating them, the lad is so dirty that I don’t like him cooking, not even boiling rice. He loves picking his nose and he actually learn how to wash his hands after using the loo here and that was after millions of attacks from me. Well, I think his doping his making him act weird, these days, when he washes his hands, he actually shows me his hands so I know he has washed his hands ;-)

 

Had the sardine from my lunch rice with Arepa (grilled maize flour made like pizza), and fried eggs, downed everything with a hot cuppa of #greentea. Used my hot sauce (made with Mustard, ketchup, mayo, vinegar,dried parsley, dried oregano, and el pikante).  Filling and satiated.  

 

Later in the evening, one of the threes that left on Sunday came back with his partner in his case. Had his hearing earlier in the day, and this is the third time in three years he has been having hearing and not results. They were house in El Renacer rehabilitation centre (where we were before been hauled to La Joya), they are taken daily from Renacer to their hearing in Darien (interior part of panama). 

 

Had an early night as I planned waking up early and also it seem the flu is coming to get me. Drank another cup of tea with some medications. Hope I feel much better in the morning. 

 

Some reading before nature took over! 

 

Tue, 17 Jun 2014 

Woke up to use the loo with blocked nose, and joint pains, friggin flu seems to be lurking around. Drank the last of our detox liquid, and threw away the rest; damn bitter like our bitter experience in the slammer. 

 

Brewed me a hot cup of green tea and left for our signal spot. Daylight; now I can see the extend of the damage done to our signal spot; not even the cats will dare walk through that area, dicey and dangerous walking. Have posted pictures of the damage to my twitter: @Doingtimeabroad 

 

Feeling several symptoms of flu, its coming, three of my cellmates had down with it and many in the pavilion; too bad can’t escape it due to poor hygiene in the cell. Well, I’m prepared for it as I have medication to help relieve the symptoms. 

 

Had a quick breakfast upstairs when the breakfast cart passed through the passage downstairs; took a cup of the warm cornmeal, filling and warm as my body needed something hot or warm. 

 

School has finally resumed as the roll-call was made for tuesday’s class. Mine is tomorrow, but then, if I’m not feeling too well, I might call in sick, but without doctor’s report to proof it. 

 

Since the signal spot is inaccessible, kept my phone very close to the spot and still got enough signal to be able to communicate with schat and also sent some tweets. And also completed #Sade #SoldierOfLove album download from a torrent site; better quality than what others are downloading.  

 

Downstairs in the cell, another round of distilling by my mate who came back from the interior last night starving and unkempt as the police didn’t provide anything for them, and not even proper meal; they had one meal a day and were refused even buying food with their own money. 

 

Rushed my first hot shower of the day before blending beets and melon for a breakfast smoothie. Aches and pains forced me to slipped into my bed for a quick nap, but just couldn’t sleep as the heat was grilling and my body just couldn’t shut down to sleep. 

 

After distilling, my mate cooked soup with pork tails that came in the lunch cart, decided to take some of the soup but with added chillies flakes, which got my sweating that I had to take another hot shower. 

 

In-between my nap and lunch, followed the football matches of the day. The much-awaited match #BrazilMexico was not aired on any of the stations, we had to listen to it on radio. Followed the rest of today’s matches, so also the rest of the pavilion. 

 

My pharmacist-cellmate had his fortnightly conjugal visit with his missus today, came back with foods but wouldn’t share with none, got the raise of the lads talking; such is his life. 

 

19:40:01 on the news tonight, more revelations on the missing Dutch students, their rug sack and passport found, but more mysteries still surrounds their disappearances, and more news of unsolved cases of #MissingPersons in #Panama #MissingPersonsPanama are coming out. It’s so sad that there are some serial killer (s) operating silently and they had been left unchecked for so long. The case of the two missing Dutch students seems to have awoken many of cold cases that had been left to sleep. Panama is still waiting for arrival of another Dutch team of experts; probably there will be forensic scientists in this team to check for #DNA or anything that will link them to a third party. Hope this case is solved as it has kept many on the edge of their seats. 

 

My phone is upstairs, but no signal as I can’t make it to the signal spot, hope our welders will find a solution to the problem and get it sorted asap! 

 

From words going around, the new prison #MegaJoya #PenalCity is alive and running with new inmates. Few inmates from joyita and newbies from the transitional jail had been transferred to the new prison. Nobody knows what will become of us, if they will come for us and when?  What we dread most, how we will move with our phones and weaponry to our new abode. 

 

When I finally got downstairs, my mate who just got back from court was packing, this is the third time the lad is packing to be released. Praying this packing will be his last, lawyers, prosecutors and judges had played enough with him and his companion. His people had paid enough money to buy his freedom, but like always, one greedy person still want more; typical human nature. 

 

Down with the flu bug, can’t eat anything solid, went for a hot oatmeal with peanut butter. The lads were busy chatting like always, slipped into my concrete bed for an early night. Wasn’t long before nature took me on her wings to dreamland, where we’re free ;-) 

 

Wed, 18 Jun 2014 

Woke up around 2am as someone was busy in the toilet; and that was our gayly Dopemaster, he’s taken to odd hours to do his dope so that nobody will see him. Nothing we can do for, it’s self-redemption or the drugs will waste him, which its already doing; sometimes he rushes his food with bare hand forgetting that he has a spoon, when reminded, he will answer he forgot. The system has no cure for him, he’s on his own like everyone else here in the pavilion.  

 

Back to sleep after using the loo, and with a blocked nostril, popped in paracetamol to help with the symptoms, did some reading until sleep sets in. 

 

Only to be awoken with a strong pungent smell, somebody is in the toilet and no other person that our gayly lass; guess all the pig tails and whatever he eats around is doing him bad. Got everyone up around 5:30am with his bomb. Quickly brush and changed, took my cup and tea to have it brew upstairs by my mate. 

 

Another round of footie will be on air today, glad #TeamHolland vs. #TeamAustrialia match will be aired, the other two matches later in the day won’t be aired. Only on radio! 

 

Roll-call for school came, as our PA system blasted out names of inmates for today’s school. Made up my mind and left, despite the state of my health, still went out for the three hours of time-wasting. 

 

Very sick, but sat through the classes, even when one of the teachers told me to leave, I insisted on staying through the classes. 

 

Apparently, I’m in a new class, while many of my former peers are still in the old class, not bad for a non-native speaker, apart from the Jamaicans who are slow learners of spanish, many who failed are spanish speakers. The old sets of Jamaicans here were fast learners. In the final class which will end in September and graduation in December.  Can’t wait to get through this ordeal; every walk to the school is an exposure to danger as one comes in close contacts with the locals who are always on the hunt for foreigners to fleeced. 

 

Back from school with my flu at its peak, my final option is to try my elixir; concoction made from our distilled liquor and mixes of herbs (Garlic, Cinnamon, Black pepper, Coriander seeds, aniseed, cardamon, chilies flakes). My temperature was very high, rushed my brunch and showered with a very hot water; finally took a shot of my cure-all concoction and slumped into my bed. When I woke up around 10pm, the lads were drinking and revelling as one of us will be leaving on the morning.  Drank some water and back to bed. 

 

Thu, 19 Jun 2014 

 

Woke up around 5am, feeling much better than yesterday. From my feelings, I know I can hit the gym today, but first thing first, headed to the signal spot as we will be having our weekly headcount later this morning. With my cup of #greentea, hurried to the table by my mate upstairs. 

 

Nobody was there, and signal was great; news update; #BBC seems to have the best news app with friendly user interface compared to other news apps. Thus, I stick to BBC for British, Europe and World news and BBC magazine. For Dutch news; since I follow most on twitter, I tend to get all news and gossips via twitter and if something worth reading, I check up the url. Updated apps that updated, sent off tweets and brief chat with schat; always busy. 

 

One of the three from my cell that went to the interior for hearing went to the clinic for a last check up before he leaves on bail; after 3yrs, but later have to make a bail out for good. He’s the lad #IBS and with phobia for germs; always washing his hands, literally every minute of the day ;-) 

 

Flu and joint ache all gone, well the lower back still stays as it didn’t come with the flu, was there before the flu. Stashed my stuffs like others and made my way outside. But first got into the gym and arrange what I’ll be doing today; Chest, Biceps and Triceps. Outside while headcounts was going on, used the monkey bars to hit reverse rows and dips; exhausted on both, did some brisk-walking and stretching before the cops were done. None missing and no surprise search.

 

Back in, straight to my workout, started on the bench and did successive reps of multi sets, added closed, and flyes and DB press, then cable for triceps and biceps isolation, also did landmine. Got me exhausted before calling it off. My mate and his companion finally left, so also two other inmates after years in the dungeon. #Freedom at last for them, but first they are heading to the immigration where they will be sorted out accordingly.  And it could take forever at the immigration.  

 

My other cellmate got us on the bender, as he also will be going free after his companion took the rap for their case and bagged 80 months; thus, he’s celebrating his freedom. One that will see him outside hustling to get his companion out asap! 

 

Like others who had gone before him, his major preoccupation right now, is and solely ‘getting laid’. He asked me to search online for a hotel/resort with swimming and one on a beachfront, his pals has assured him, there will be loads of fishes for him when he comes out. I’m beginning to think if he also has gotten polished dominoe inserted in his mojo, as he’s so desperate about getting laid. But, there’s still a clause in his freedom; he has to pay what he owed his lawyer before his release. If he doesn’t pay, I know for sure, the lawyer will use all his legal and illegal means to stop his release. 

 

With news of his release and Colombia winning Ivory Coast and qualifying to the second round in #Brazil2014, more reason to break open our gallons of liquor. Lot of betting in the pavilion for the matches and many Colombians won. While those who betted on England lost. Being Thursday, not many are drinking, but quite a handful are celebrating colombia’s qualification. Their real party will come in the weekend. And it’s the weekend before our next fortnightly visit. 

 

Each time Colombia plays football matches, our passages are always free of inmates, yesterday was one of those days. Both passages were free of any human, and that gave the cats guts to walk around, guess they were surprised at the silence and emptiness, they invaded the passages, but as Colombia scored and with noises rising and clanking metal sounds, the lads celebrated their victory and a comback after sixteen years of absence in the #WorlddCup, the cats ran helter-skelter looking for places to take refuge, sort of fun watching them run. 

 

Mobile signal at night is becoming hard to hook on, after trying for hours, bowed out and left for my cell, took another shower; this time a cold shower as my flu seems to taken a bow, hope for good. Feeling much better, except for my sore back, which my flu concoction won’t and can’t cure ;-) 

 

 

Fri, 20 Jun 2014 

 

An early day, woke up knowing I’m definitely hitting the gym today; whatever I’m doing, will do be done. Flu is gone and bit relieved of my sore back. 

 

By the time I finished upstairs at the signal spot and got downstairs to pick up my stuffs, the catholic priest was here for his Friday mass, since he doesn’t come every Friday, he’s forgiven for nibbling into our gym time. 

 

The lad on the door, allowed me outside; apart from Thursdays headcount, been a very a long while I was outside to workout and enjoy nature. Like an unleashed dog, I savoured the freshness of the open air and basked in the hot sun; stretching, brisk-walking, did some body-weight exercises and used the monkey bars behind for dips and reverse rows. Stayed outside until the priest was through with his mass. 

 

When I finally got in, the gym was empty, except for two lads who braced the coldness to get back to where the stopped when the priest came. 

 

Guess exhausted from the intense exercises outside, did couple of sets for an all-body #HIIT #Hardcore workout; starting with pull-ups, lat cable pull-down, triceps, biceps body-weight squat and lunges, enough to round up my day and week at the gym. Will take the weekend to fully recover, to be back on Monday for a normal routine and hope to keep on and up with my daily rituals of hardcore training. Have had enough time-out and rest, but will still be off from normal squating, will rather stick to dumbbells and goblets squats and lunges and more of body-weight exercises for my legs. 

 

The last of my mates has gone; he was the loudest and the noisiest, and also the glutton who eats every time he turns around. And the one who usually end his night of binge drinking by throwing up. Wouldn’t know if prison turned him into all that or that’s him before being slammed. Though he once told me, he turned to eating because of stress of being locked up. Well, we all turn to something to help with the stress. I for one, prefer my gym and music and reading, the oldest by age in our cell prefers diving into his porn stash and collections of fat ladies cunts; different songs for different folks. Others will die for a joint, a line of el rey (king of all powder), a pint of moonshine or our potent liquor, while others just want the company of the only lad with tits. 

 

Done with workout, and it’s weekend, the pavilion is waking up to what keep us alive and kicking; raving! But this time around the passion of football is awoken in us, keeps the passage empty of humanity when a match is on tv. 

 

Showered and washed up my clothes, enough water for each day. Nobody seems to be complaining or fighting over water for now. Many are focused on their freedom, as many are due to be freed but flimsy Panamanian bureaucracy is still keeping them. 

 

Helter-skelter and chaos, as our alarm system went up, first man I saw running was our vice president, then I knew something is going wrong; cops are coming down on us (not literally coming down like our shemale does) , but another search. But it turned out to be another round of headcount. We just had our weekly headcount yesterday’s morning and not that a hundred inmates were released between yesterday and today, that got the cops confused with their maths. Something had prompted this urgent call for headcount. Being headcount didn’t stop us from stashing our phones and weapons of warfare and all the undesirables ;-) 

 

Outside, tongues wagged as each talked of why the sudden headcount. Having heard all and adding one and one from what my freed mate told me; it’s the fear of what they have heard about the new inmate in our midst. The lad to me, look the opposite of all that had been said of him; quiet, rarely talk and rarely seen. The only time he’s seen is when his lawyer comes and that exactly what prompted the sudden headcount. After he met with his lawyer and sent back with a cop and a warden, the cops who don’t trust their ranks, came for a recount to be sure that the lad is in. Satisfied, they left and we, back to our lives behind closed doors, everyman to his stashes to remove his hidden wares. And there began our weekend. Hope the presence of this one man would have the cops on our ass every second of the day. 

 

Another weekend before our fortnightly visit, thus, it will be fun and loads of revelling as the lads know very well on Monday, there will be fresh foods. 

 

Still on the mysterious disappearances of the two dutch young women, who had been missing for over two months now. All that had been found so far doesn’t give one any hope for a happy ending this missing saga. And some stupid Panamanian investigators are already suggesting that, they were probably klled by wild animals; snake, tigers and whatever animals they’ve got out there. (we have had our own share of panama jungle; snakes, gigantic spiders, frogs and different wild animals had made their way into our pavilion), if the DNA proves the human remains found to be theirs, then those poor girls were probably killed by some local and a serial killer running wild and free in panama. And the government had had their eyes closed to several unsolved disappearances in the past. But this one case is unearthing so many buried and unsolved cases in this beautiful tourist and banking haven; #Panama. Beggars belief upon hearing some local investigators saying, the two missing Dutch students could have been probably attacked by wild animals or snakes. Had expected them to say, with chains of events and many unsolved disappearances, there’s probably a serial killers, sexual predators and someone who has been evading the authorities out there and is still evading the lapse security in panama. Hope this one case will turn every unturned stone in panama on cases of #MissingPeople. 

 

Fast forward; back in the cell, showered and hit my bunk, but my English mate and his drinking cayman Islands companion took to the bottles, maybe to celebrate England quick exit from the world cup. They drink and sang-along some good ballads and old club anthems. But one that got me wondering how close they were becoming was both singing to Celion Dion’s ‘Tell me….that the sun and moon rise in your eyes’….Hummmmmm! that line alone got me fretting what our two blokes were up to. Well, it’s the drink and that’s what drinks does, either turns a man into a sissy or makes him think he’s a superman, like the lad nicknamed superman after flying from the top floor and crash-landed down on the hard concrete floor. That act alone friggin earned him the name; #Superman! 

 

 

Sat, 21 Jun 2014 

Woken from the claps of thunders as it poured hard for couple of minutes, such type of rain, always comes with destruction, maybe not here, but in the city and several parts of the country, people will feel the aftermath of the few minutes rain. But gave us enough water, added to what we had yesterday.  

 

Slide back into my bedsheets, not bothered for an early day upstairs, just needed some hours of sleep. Finally up before the others as it’s our general cleaning day; removed my stuffs, mostly my reserve gallons of water and gym box. 

 

Left for the signal spot, which was already crowded by those trying to connect for either calls or internet. Took my position and set my phone rolling, couldn’t do much, but did updated my news and sent off few tweets before whistle went off; an early morning patio. Doubt if many will be going out, as some are still sleeping off their hangovers. My hustle for early patio to run will begin on Monday as I’m feeling much better. 

 

The tension in my cell is loosening up as the two noisemakers are gone, less gathering and bit quiet, I actually took a power nap, despite one of the lads distilling, it was so quiet, unlike my cell. 

 

Many inmates are hit by the flu bug, and three of my cellmates are down with seriously strong dry cough, gets worse at night. Hope they find a remedy for themselves as getting one’s name on the clinic list is just but a dream. 

 

The world cup matches are keeping us occupied as we see powerful football nations beaten by underdogs. That’s the beauty of the game; expecting the unexpected ;-) 

 

The cops that mounted the powerful searchlights on Friday night because of the new man in our midst are still camping outside the fence, with their truck and powerful searchlights focused on our pavilion. This one fish must be the catch of all time for them, thus, they wouldn’t let it slip back into the sea; hard to find then! 

 

Still on the missing Dutch girls, everyone following the case is left in suspense as we awaits the result of the DNA test to confirm if the human remains and other things found at different sites in the jungle belong to the missing Dutch women. 

 

Meanwhile, in the pavilion, it’s a bit of our weekend mood and many are thrown into repressive-thinking mode as this week has seen a handful released, leaving their friends behind. And one those is my boxer-cellmate, whose buddy left after his companion took the rap for their case; had to be released as one accepted responsibility for the finding in their boat. His other pals who had done the stone-in-the-dick thing had all gone out and they seems to be chatting from their different hotels telling of their sexploits and what their pearled-dicks are accomplishing. One even texted that he laid a broad who cum 5x and he only cum 1x! What a massive #Sexploits! Altogether, about six of his close pals had all gone out on bail or free, for sure none is coming back or the stupid ones that will hit the sea again with dangerous cargos. 

 

Also with the locals, they are leaving and released en mass, all the old faces I used to see and know are all gone, replaced with new faces and hungry ones who are new to the rule of engagements and in dealing with foreigners. 

 

With the passage to our signal spot damaged and the welders are not in a hurry to get it fixed, then accessing the signal area is out of reach. I’m used to waiting by my mate’s table till signal comes in. But nightly waiting is always in vain as nothing happens most night. 

 

Thus, early night to my cell and it’s bloody hot! 

 

Sun, 22 Jun 2014 

The smell of distilled mash got me up, as my boxer-cellmate was busy distilling. After a brief stretching and my quiet moment with my maker, used the loo and pick out my stuffs as I left for my signal spot, couldn’t brew my tea as I will be in his way. Decided to brew it upstairs. 

 

Upstairs, my mate was still sleeping or awake, but his door was shut, and wouldn’t want to disturb him. Thus, went about my thing until he had his door opened, then I went to him and brew my morning #greentea, refreshing and gave me the early needed boost I wanted. 

 

Went about my signal business which is getting harder with each new day. It’s something I’m now used to and also living with it! 

 

18:33:45 #Breaking #News and still on the missing Dutch ladies, it’s likely the human remains and other things found deep in the jungle of panama belongs to the two missing Dutch young women. Search will begin now on two men captured on camera to have been with them at a certain location before their disappearances. 

 

23:59:03 just threw my little prick crack-head cellmate from the cell, don’t friggin someone to die of overdose in my cell and called upon to give statements. Statement given at my fall is enough and that was me and my case. His compatriots in the cell had been turning a blind eye to his drug usage. But, being in the cell today and seeing all he did and how many time he walked into the toilet, closed the curtain and do his dope without taking a drop of shit and his weird behaviour; soiling the toilet, spitting on the floor, and denied, then I know, I have had enough of him. 

 

00:15:26 opened the door and let him; felt so bad about what I did, but it’s the norm in the centre; every cell always throw out their cellmates who are crack-heads as they start stealing when they can’t afford to keep up with payment and are denied credits by their dealers. 

 

Thought over my action, and seeing the situation of the pavilion; full but to the authorities there’s still room for one more! 

 

I called him and had a pret-talk with him, sort of advice, advice or counselling that the prison is supposed to do to many addicts here. Many had died from their addictions as none came to their rescue, heard a dutch inmate committed suicide by hanging himself in El Renacer after suffering from depression, when he couldn’t afford his dope any more. 

 

Have told him to seek help in whatever way he can, the church, good friends (if they will listen to him as each man has his own problem). He promised to sort himself out, hope he does and hope this will be the last time. 

 

He said, he knew what the situation is like in the gym hall, he wouldn’t want to be moved there, and that’s the only place he can go to if kicked out from my cell. No cell will receive him as they all know him and what he’s like when intoxicated. Pray he finds his redemption like everyone else here. 

 

Mon, 23 Jun 2014 

Prison is a binary world, either you are locked up or you aren’t. 

 

It’s visit day today, as many will be coming in to see their loved ones, hugs, kisses and touching exchanged. Others will go up just to leave the pavilion for a while, for me and few others, we only leave the pavilion for consular visit and our fortnightly school. Other than that, and lucky to get your name on the clinic visit and be taken; then you have made it far enough from the pavilion. Sometimes, I dread leaving the pavilion as to minimised contacts with local inmates who are always edgy and constantly walking around with knives; looking for a foreign inmate to rob. 

 

Woke up late, by late I mean anytime after 6am, rushed upstairs where an annoying cries of a kitten kept me irritated, little did I know the kitten was a dire need of help. A crack-head inmate had thrown the little through the bars on the backdoor of the sewage passage into the passage, getting the poor thing trapped. It’s been meowing and crying all morning and nobody gives a fuck about rescuing the poor thing. 

 

Finally took a look and saw the lonely kitten, gotta go get the key to the passage and walk down and get her out. But first have to inform everyone upstairs not to urinate, wash, spit or pour water on my head. 

 

09:54:58 the visit list just came and names called; the lads are filing out. Couldn’t make it to the gym early as I needed to be upstairs. Heading to the gym now. 

 

Beginning to feel much better, but still not at my best state of health and mind. That can only be when the body is fully healed. A minor row with a lad who took all my weights away without asking me. Though it was a sort of verbal brawl that lasted about 5 minutes. 

 

Being our visit day, three of my mates had visit, but only one brought food and shared with the rest of us. Not so many in the cell now. Like always, rice with hard-fried chicken, taste different but salty, as they love salty food. At least something for a change from our prison-cooked food. Got chocolate powder from one of my cellmate.

 

18:20:39 #Breaking #BreakinNews #RIPLisanneFroon who disappeared since 1st of April in #Boquete in #Panama. After hundred of hours of search through the jungle of panama and the border to #CostaRica, Human remains were found. #DNA test were carried out, which came back positive that the DNA from the  human remains is compatible with the DNA of Lisanne parents who are rarely seen on camera. The last time I saw Lisanne’s mother on tv, she looked so frail and worn-out from crying her heart out. The latest is the fear everyone who has been following this new dreaded to hear. I pray the good Lord gives #Lisanne family the heart to bear the lose of their daughter. It’s been a heartbreaking journey, travelling this far only to be met with a nightmare that one wished he shouldn’t wake up from.  So much has been said about their case, but the one million dollars unanswered question will be; who killed her (and Kris, if she is also dead) and motive behind the killing? In a close knitted community of the indigenas, where everything is hushed, nobody will ever know the last hours of those girls who gave their lives for the services of humanity, only to be rewarded by being killed. To keep Dutch TV viewers and Radio listeners abreast of what is happening in Panama and on the case of #LisanneKris, Dutch news media are here in panama; saw quite a few during the different press conferences and briefing during the search and finds of things belonging to the two missing Dutch students. The dutch media in panama will keep the dutch public abreast with the latest on this mysterious case in the jungle. This evening, just found

 

20:33:54 many in the pavilion are also following the news about the missing Dutch girls, some did asked what the Dutch Embassy and the Den Haag will do about the incident. Hope the Dutch government will keep the pressure on their panama counterpart to find the sex-predator (s) that is lurking around killing foreigners. 

 

Had an early night as I planned waking up early to make it upstairs as signal wasn’t good today. 

 

Tue, 24 Jun 2014 

Woke up very early, around 4am to use the loo, but decided to dressed up and head upstairs. Went through my morning rituals and brewed a cup of green tea. When I got upstairs, was silent and bare, but also hot, had to take off my T-shirt, glad the bugging flies were still snoring like many of my fellow inmates. Though on my short walk through the passage, the last of our nocturnal inmates were still sitting around smoking, chatting and talking in low tones. 

 

Signal was superb, good enough to blast all of my saved tweets and finished my downloads; another full album of #TrintjeOosterhuis #NeverCanSayGoodbye ; Sound wicked, jazzy and blues. Another addition to my collection ;-) 

 

Started another download; collection of New York time bestsellers of Fictions and Non-fiction novels, should be enough read for me, though with my Samsung Galaxy S2 screen. Brief chat with schat and my lil girl surprised me with answers to questions sent to her; always sent her quotes to read and write back what she understands from the quotes and in her own words, she surprised me with every response (posting a screenshot of her answers to the last three quotes on my twitter timeline). Tah Dahh! …. that was her last words after answering my questions. how time flies! 

 

Quickly read through news making headlines around the world, and updated my news apps, and downloaded articles that I will read later today. 

 

Finally done, and left for the gym; but left the phone behind with my mate, so the downloads will be running. 

 

Downstairs, starving, rushed through a breakfast of cold cereal (cornflakes + oats + whey protein) and left for the gym. Bit full, but found enough metals to start my workout; back + biceps, an old training mate joined me. We had an intensive workout, though, very careful with what I had to do as I’m not 100% recovered from my back and sciatica problem. 

 

Tried going outside for a quick burst of cardio but the cop on duty won’t let me as it was about raining; and it never rained, only dark sky with bits of drizzle! 

 

Got in and shower, my mates had cooked rice with some chicken from yesterday’s visit, had a bit after shower and took a long deep-power nap as I didn’t get much last night.

 

The meat from the visit will take us through Wednesday and then we’re back to buying whatever comes in or eating whatever comes on the prison food cart.  

 

Had a brief chat with one of the newly released lad on whatsapp, lad has gone back into the jungle; his profile picture was him saddling a massive brown horse, got my laughing, but it’s their lives, boats and horses. The terrains that they work and live is not one for the luxury of cars. He’s having the time of his life, he’s out and his partner is still at the immigration waiting for families and friends to raise a grand and get him out. Hope they do! 

 

Spent most of the day upstairs, but signal was terrible, maybe the cops behind the signal has decided to block everything altogether. It will be real devastating if the signal is blocked for good, well, wouldn’t be for our good. 

 

Wed, 25 Jun 2014 

Planned waking early, but couldn’t make it as planned, woke up around 6am, well, for many in the pavilion, that’s way too early. Years of behind bars has made me realise how lazy prison can turn people to. 

 

Rushed through my morning rituals before leaving for the signal spot. There wasn’t anybody around, so also signal, spent about two hours and nothing. Had to surrender and leave to change for the gym. Starving, rushed a quick breakfast, and left for the gym. Hitting shoulders today; few lads joined me and we had a good workout, I’m gradually coming back to form. Things are taking shape gradually. Focused on my flexibility as I did loads of stretches and body weight exercises. Wanted to hit the fields, but it was past 10am, the cops won’t let anyone out again. 

 

Back in the cell, water came but not enough to fill up all our tanks, and one of the lads was distilling. Well, no cause for alarm as the sky is dark and it look like there will be a pour today. Lately, we haven’t had water crisis like in the past, but doesn’t mean we have forgotten and lose our guard, our reserves are there in case it does happen. 

 

Showered and washed my gym clothing, since I tend to wash everyday after workout, barely have dirty clothes like most lads who piles clothes and then send them out to our different launderettes to wash for a fee. 

 

Took a protein shake, before slumping into my bed for an hour of power nap. Sleeping and half awake as France took on Ecuador to a goalless draw; sending Ecuador out while Switzerland beat Honduras to qualify with France. 

 

#Breaking #News; the family of #Lisanne has accepted the death of their daughter, on news, the mother was shown talking during a press briefing. She and Lisanne’s father have been in panama throughout the search, only to be shown remains of their precious daughter. Vicious and heinous things do happen in this beautiful paradise, yet to be discovered by foreigners; Panamá 

 

I’m beginning to think very hard on getting a router of mine, but the problem is the climbing and taking it down when our alarm system goes off. The lad that fail and sprained his back is still walking like a crooked old man. He was lucky to have survived the fall, after crashed landing on the concrete floor. 

 

Signal is very bad today, left my phone upstairs all day, and nothing has happened to the signal reception. Frustrating, but gave me time out to do loads of reading and writing. 

 

Earlier today in the gym, saw some new faces, since my time-out from training, quite a lot had happened in the pavilion, lots of new inmates hauled in to begin a new life in the slammer. But have taken note of the old ones; those close to me that had been released on bail. Three from me cell, but then with their partners, thus, six people that were very close to me. Everyone in the cell are beginning to feel their absence. After years of living, brawling together, we became so close, became band of brothers; living and watching out for each other. But one thing so unique about prison’s journey; it’s a personal one. You can get hauled in with a partner, but once inside, you are on your own. New alliances and friendship are forged for one’s benefit. I pray they stay safe and out of harm’s way and out of crime. It’s only a prayer! They have to do something on their part! 

 

Meanwhile, before the cop on duty left for the day, he was taken around the passage for his due; everyone that benefits from his kindness, letting us out to run and workout under the weather gave him whatever they can afford. I parted ways with my precious dollar; same cop was in the gym earlier today and did some reps on the bench, turned red after couple of reps ;-) 

 

Should be crashing earlier tonight as it’s our weekly headcount tomorrow morning, and who knows what the cops has got in their sleeves for us. Though we will be doing our parts of hiding and stashing and leave them to find ;-) 

 

Before hitting my concrete bed, had all prepared to be stash on the first call, took out removable parts from my phone and stashed them. It will be a long day tomorrow if we are stormed on. 

 

 

Thu, 26 Jun 2014 

Woke up very early to use the loo, around 5am and that’s how my sleep ended. Rushed a pot of water to brew tea and dressed up for an early workout. Upstairs, signal was fine as I was able to get online, chatted with schat and responded to few other chats. Quickly send out some old tweets and updated my news and magazines apps for current news. 

 

Then, came the call for our weekly headcount, haad to stash my phone upstairs with a mate. 

 

Downstairs in my cellmates were busy stashing whatever needed stashed, as we don’t know what the lads in blue has got for us. 

It was going to be a very lengthy count as they decided to count cell by cell on the second run. Used the long time outside to brisk-walk, run and did loads of body-weight exercises; reverse rows, hanging leg raise, pull-ups, push-ups, lunges and loads stretches. My cell were called in, got in and that was my workout for the day. 

 

Showered and washed, also my bedsheets and my trainers; need a new trainer as the old one is worn-out, my socks were soak with water from the fields. 

 

Cooked ripe plantains to eat with the lungs of last night, and a cup of ice-cold grape juice. While eating upstairs, then came another call for another round of headcount; seems the cops need to get re-education on how to count. Well not sure why the call for the second count, we all had our stuffs probably stashed as we filed out again to be counted for the third time today. 

These time, it went fast and quick and without any error. 

 

Back in, slumped in my bed to catch a quick nap, but then came another call and this time around, it was the much-awaited call; our consular visit. 

 

She finally came at last, guess she and the embassy crew have been dead busy with the case of the two now-confirmed dead students #LisanneKris; #RIPLisanneKris! The embassy has been the 

liaisons between the parents of the dead girls and the local authorities who are doing everything to sweep the case under the carpet with flimsy excuses that they could have been killed by wild animals. Well, that theory and many others doesn’t hold, they should come up with something a bit concrete, like how corrupte their system is; how police could be paid to release murderers and rapists. 

 

We filed out and met with her, got our extra shopping done, but not all I asked for; a beggar has no choice! One thing she did get for me that got me smiling, is ten packs of green tea, which is enough to take me through loads of months. 

 

She brought in lots of magazines and few novels which will keep me busy, also went into the library and borrowed three books; Othello, Tailor of Panama, and the writings of Karl Marx. Should be through with them and send them back before next weekend. 

 

Those and what my consul brought will keep busy for a long while. 

 

Just found out today from an American-panamanian mate who was with us and will be leaving tomorrow, that the cop on duty at the admin is a friggin gay. Now I know why he takes pleasure is wanting to check every inmate before they climb upstairs to the admin block. And he likes groping when he searches people, everyone is always complaining his crude method of searching inmates, but nobody thought he enjoys what he’s doing. I guess one reason we never suspected him to be gay was, he’s damn too ugly and unkempt to be gay ;-) 

 

But, he is and is one of the few ugly ones around, well, there are many ugliness in pavilion two (our shemale holdout) , loads of them and they come in different shapes and sizes, one will find whatever he’s looking for, and some of our lads have been doing just that, someone to exchange saucy photos at night ;-). Few had come to me to have their media folders locked or encrypted, that nobody could see what is meant for their eyes only. But, out of curiosity, I have seen things I’m not supposed to see. Got me thinking, what prison time does to heterosexual men; after years of incarceration, heterosexual men tend to be developing sexual tendencies for other men. And many will try to hide it, but within them, they want to explore such fantasy. Weird…..innit?  My released Canadian mate called them #WeakMinds or I will simply put it as #SimpleMindedMen, men who can’t hold up to their words. 

 

Brief chat with my consul, no new news from #DenHaag, we are still on our own as we have been from day one. But at least she got my injections; for the sciatica and back pain. Enough to take me through for a very long while if I can only stay away from strenuous exercises. 

 

On our way back, dropped a dollar for the lads in chains under the admin building. A lad who has been in chain for months upstairs is been sequestered from the general population as there are gang soldiers on mission to take him down in any way or any means they can. He was brought in from colon; since he came here, there had been three attempts on his life, well, his low and cheap life. He’s accused by his assailants to have killed one theirs, thus, he’s marked for death. And they won’t stop till he’s taken down. Another was released after years of incarceration, on getting to the final control on gate one, someone pulled the trigger of a gun on him and ended his life on the nozzle of a gun. Live by the gun, die by the gun. 

 

Finally in, dumped all my consul brought today and slumped into my bed and finally got my nap. Sleep through and woke up starving, and in need of a cool shower, as it was grilling hot in the cell. Showered and ate beans that came with pork tails earlier in the day. Always passed the tails and most porky meat. Brewed a cup of green tea with fresh ginger and left for our signal spot; haven’t held my phone all day. 

 

Took a shot of Dexa-Doceplex from what my consul brought in for me, cost me a fortune, thus, being a prisoner in panama is an expensive business and also a deadly adventure, especially for foreigners. 

 

On my way upstairs, met our reina, she’s dressed to kill, wondering if someone is celebrating something tonight, or she’s having an early weekend. Hope she will drink till stupor tonight and puke all over the passage. 

 

Saw the local shemale working upstairs in the admin,  and claims to have gone under the knife for sex reassignment to become a true lady. Well good for her numerous clients who are enjoying the new him. 

 

The pavilion is still tensed from today’s headcount, every finger seems to be pointing to the new lad whom the authorities see as highl-risk inmate, if he’s such, then they should get him out and keep him a more secured facility than sending panic signals through the population ;-) 

 

Like always, until the real thing (search) comes, we will always be in panic. 

 

Called it a night as I made my way downstairs for an early night. 

 

Fri, 27 Jun 2014 

#TGIF it’s #Weekend, well for some lads here, everyday is weekend as names of days doesn’t stop them from revelling and feasting. With a prison system like this, one can decide to be happy or sad throughout his prison time as he so choose. 

 

Have been up since 2:30am, after waking with a full bladder, used the loo but just couldn’t get back to sleep, tried everything, even counting sheep; literally counting months and time to go. Well, allowed the mind to have its walkabout into memory lane; went fine, uninterrupted, uncovered many things, that I would love to let them lie. But such is life; the conscious battling with the unconscious! 

 

On my way upstairs around 4am with a cup of green tea as I make my way through the dark passage; always keep the cover open to be used as a quick weapon. An inmate once told, me, he has his trainers on all day as it’s prison where anything can happen any time. At the corner of the passage, our reina sat with a see-through nightie puffing fag, probably after a busy night of hard work. Someone gotta keep the lads giggling and satisfied. Her gran tetas were all poiten as we greeted each and I stole a look. Nice lass though!

 

Decided to read downloaded news from yesterday as I wait if sleep will come back to me. By 4:30am, I was done with sleep, maybe I will be lucky to catch an afternoon nap later today. For now, time to climb upstairs to our signal zone, if I’m lucky, I will get online, for a brief chat with schat, uplaod latest news, and try and round up with my downloads. 

 

07:32:10 Signal is pretty this morning, doing some downloads, hope they all get through before the zone is congested and signal is disrupted. 

 

Another drug bust, 200 kg of pure coke busted early this morning, soon the lads will be hauled in here or pavilion 8 to start their own uncertain journey.  

 

Finally left around 8am after the download of New York Time Bestsellers was completed, started another download which should be through by tomorrow morning. 

 

Waking up early helps with getting online and benefitting from the early morning surf. Trying to get some hours of nap later in the afternoon is always hard because of the afternoon heat. 

 

Had a good workout today; basically hardcore chest and added military press! Enough for the week, will be off for the weekend to recover and also get some shots of Dexa-Doceplex to help with my sciatica pain. 

 

Barely ate anything solid today, after our mass protein shake with my group and others in the cell. Took a power nap and later had spaghetti which a lad gave me. And that’s my meal for today. Maybe cold cereal later tonight. 

 

20:20:51 cops have mounted the powerful search light outside the pavilion again, and Latino sounds belting out from our boom box at the back of the cells as the lads are in the la fiesta mode. Others are also drinking to whatever reason they deemed befitting tonight. At least u’ve sold three gallons of my prison-brewed wine. Saw two gallons of grape juice, should get both and prepare a new batch of wine. It’s so funny, those going for my wine are like the elite in the pavilion; educated, and always kept to themselves, avoiding the bunch of many. It clearly shows the difference between them and those that prefers the stronger, lethal and potent distilled liquor, which could be fiery. 

 

Signal dropped this evening, had to leave for an early night as I will be getting up very early tomorrow to get online and catch the first surf. 

 

Back in the cell, had another cold or cool shower after downing a bowl of cold cereal; literally cold as I got a cup of ice, it’s friggin hot, feel like sleeping without my clothes on, but dare not try that here, slipped into my concrete bunk with my Tommy boxer, played some Candr crush, friggin difficult level 250! Read some pages from my bedtime novel before nature took me on another ride into dreamland.  

 

Sat, 28 Jun 2014 

Up several times to use the loo; took my direutics very late, and that got my several times to take some leaks. Finally got myself up by 6am, brew green tea and changed for another round of an early day upstairs. An early drizzle of rain brought in some cold air, the lads will be in their deepest phase of their sleep, finally some cool air to keep us cool and chilled. 

 

Upstairs was scanty, two lads were on their phones, either with loved ones of business associate. For me, needed to know how schat and my musketeers are faring, as they are my strength and what keeps me going. I know many men who had broken down after it all fall apart within their families. When slammed up, something has to keep one going and stronger; and for many of us, it’s our families. 

 

Talked with schat, loads that I’m missing; especially my lil girl growing up and learning to bang doors when upset, and beginning to feel and want to be treated as an individual. Glad schat is also growing up with her and learning from her; for me, it’s all female hormones setting in ;-), schat promised to put them under control. Funny how they both battle and are still best of friends. But she misses me most as she does say that on her chat, can’t wait to be back home and give that one warm fatherly hug and reassured her that I won’t be away for such a long time as I am now. 

 

She replied my last puzzle of quote, but with a wink, she definitely knew what the quote mean. Pray she can apply it to her young life. Full of energy and wants to do everything; mostly what makes her happy. But I always tell her, so long it doesn’t make others sad, and she understands. She is trying to be the big sister her siblings wants. Pray her the strength to understand that she is loved and we want the best for her. 

 

Back to the centre; it’s our weekly cleaning of washing, went downstairs to move my stuffs and also took all my reserves upstairs as one of the lad has moved down to the vacant bunk. That will be a big relief to the lads, who are always shouting over my gallons of reserves. The cleaning went fine, bought a pack of ox foot, another mate got one. Enough meat to cook; cooked Colombian Sancocho and made a sauce with one, but pikante sauce with loads of chillies, not for the fainthearted ;-), the lads who wanted that, loved it and his mate also. Everyone in my cell had a portion, exception of the lad who moved down from upstairs; lad tend to eat on his own, thus, can’t share my food with him…..well for now! 

 

Did some working of mine today, clean and washed my fan, friggin dusty, that it blows hot air. What’s is worth doing is worth doing well…..worth my time and my $3, that’s what I used to pay the lad who cleaned it before and he never did a satisfactory Jon; commercial! too many fans at the same time. Now I’m doing it myself and very proud of my handiwork ;-) 

 

A police scare this morning got us scrambling to our stash spots as we hid what ought to be hidden. But it was a routine check around the perimeters. Doesn’t mean we believe them, gave them another 2hrs before taking out our stuffs. 

 

World cup is back, Brazil were lucky today and Colombia displayed what they have practising for the last sixteen years, got the pavilion boiling as the lads celebrated the glorious triumphantly win of Colombia over Uruguay; 90% of the inmates here are Colombians, thus, it was Los Cafetores or Los Tres Colores that took over the pavilion today and gotten us celebrating. If they play what they played today with Brazil in quater final, the latter, being host will be packing their boots. But then, I wait my celebration tomorrow, when #TeamHolland take on #Mexico tomorrow to set up a meeting with either #Greece or #CostaRica. 

 

There’s proper victor’s celebration in the pavilion, as the Colombians celebrate their victory over Uruguay, an on and off training mate has been on me all day to drink with them. Dodging him as I’m not in the mood, had woken up early to get online and I need some hours of power nap. Finally got an hour or less of power nap. And finally left for upstairs, but he and his buddies cornered me. 

Went over to them, music and booze flowed freely and swiftly, shots of our potent liquor were downed and with every shot, goes a sip of water to cool the burning effect of our lethal cocktails. The distil wasn’t bad as it came from my cell’s distillery; the lad had used some of my juniper berries and Aniseed, which gave the drink a different flavour compared to what others distil and sell in the pavilion.  

 

Finally took over the music and belted out some of Latino finest; salsa, vallenato, and more of both. The lads weren’t in the mood or mode to listen to any other genre of music, just those two and we had enough illegally downloaded mp3 files to serve the night and help with our booze. And we also have our mouths as we talked and talked football; what else to talk about, other than football as it’s football season. Spent few hours with them before taking a leave to hunt for signal, which was null.  

 

Headed down to my cell, everyone seems to be in their respective corners; either trying to sleep, but can’t, pings of incoming instant messages from whatsapp and BBM was coming from different dark spots in the cell. One of the young lad who drank with us but left earlier when he realised he was misbehaving, good a thing he left. I follow suit, but our boxer cellmate later staggered in after I was through all the chores that I had to do before crashing into my concrete bunk. Pitch black in the cell, heard noises from the new lad who just bought pharmacist-cellmate bed above the toilet. He also was dead drunk, didn’t want to get involved, thus, stayed quiet but with my ears wide open for any scuffles, none. 

 

On my way down, along passage B, Mexicans and Colombianos were high in one of the biggest fiestas in the pavilion so far; they had our queen, alsl dressed up to entertain her host, and in the part, everything and whatsoever that is needed to keep them high and happy was available. Booze, lines that aren’t meant to be crossed but snorted, jumbo seize joints rollled by the best rollers, and more of everything and music to help with emotions. And it all goes down to private moments with our queen of the pack; touching and being touched. Some of us are definitely enjoying our time on the inside. But at the end, when it all wears out, we are back to square one, where we started from. 

 

Despite their revelling, they managed to keep the noise down; respecting our unwritten rules of engagements. 

 

Sun, 29 Jun 2014 

Woke up around 4:30am to use the loo, only to find out someone had vomited, later found out it was our boxer-cellmate, lad was wasted when he walked in, unlike him; never miss his nightly shower, but yesterday, he walked in and climbed into his bed and snored off his drunken life. Had to double checked the door if he locked it. 

 

Vomiting for the first time, he’s forgiven, and being me day to wash our toilet and shower room. I have to clean up his mess and help nurse him back to his former self. 

 

First thing first, went upstairs to get online. With my cup of hot green tea, set about my early morning cyber rituals of updating, downloading, browsing, fast-paced reading of new headlines and scan through twitter timeliness. Loads of new stuffs and some old ones; like facebook doing psychological studies secretly without its users knowledge. Seems everybody is playing #NSA and #BigBrother, snooping on everyone without their knowledge. Nowhere and no place is safe anymore, prison that’s supposed to be the most secured facility is just one big joke.

 

In the middle of my chat with schat and my lil girl who sent me a voicenote of what she did in the nursery today, heard a loud deadly scream in front of me. An epileptic inmate had seizure and was about falling head down unto the concrete floor downstairs, left me phone and rushed up to him, his compatriot who wa standing by grabbed him by his legs as half of his body was hanging halfway down the edge of the cell’s top, if his compatriot wasn’t there, it would have been a different deadly story; how he fell to his death.  

 

We rushed him inside far from the edge, someone got a slippers between his teeth, while I stabilised his head, another loosen his shirt as it’s was blazingly hot. He finally came back and was taken inside his bunk; which is built upstairs on the top of the cell. The lad, under this condition should be sleeping in a cell downstairs and on a lower bunk. But nobody is willing to switch or give up their bunks for him. Sleeping upstairs and walking around is very dangerous for someone like him. He has once fallen on the passage upstairs and got torn by the metals. But because of his business he prefers living upstairs, he’s one of our many laundrettes, does loads of washing jobs upstairs. Guess I’m one of the few here that does their washing on their own. 

 

The lad survived the epileptic attack today, the authorities are aware of his condition and that of another epileptic inmate, but they won’t do anything. In such situation, we have grown to be our brother’s helper. 

 

We have crossed our ethnicities, colours, races, nationalities, languages, status, classes and even gangs creeds to help each other when the need arises. Such is what prison has turned us into; band of brothers, looking out for each other. And that’s how we survived life’s ordeal behind bars; united we stand, divided we fall and that fall can be real bad! 

 

Finally left to change and get ready for today’s workout. Water finally came, we have been without water for two days. Had to tapped into my reserves and it helped, also prepared a tank of my grape juice wine; should be ready by Friday for #ColBra match, if Colombia wins, it will be drink till dropped!  

 

The gym was packed, being Monday, some will be full of energy others will be sleeping out their hangovers. But many came out to work and burn out the fats accumulated over the weekend. 

 

Got myself started with warm up; hitting chest and triceps, started with a 110lbs dumbbells on each arm and that set me up for an hour long intensive #HIIT #Hardcore workout for the day. Very hot in the gym, had to buy powerade halfway through my workout and also got bananas for me and my training partners. Rounded up with good stretching and hanging legs/knees raise for abs. The lad enjoyed every seconds of the workout, already asking what we are doing the next day. 

 

Back inside, enough tanks filled for the day, my boxer-cellmate who was battling his hangover all Sunday did some washing, and finally got himself together. Lad did had way too much on Saturday. Glad everything is back to normal. And our lives back to what we know as normal. 

 

Nigeria is taking on France, from past matches and performances, I see France crossing to the next stage. And Nigeria going home, and that’s exactly what happened. Africa now has one team leaft; Algeria, and they will battle it out with The Germans, but they are won’t be a match to the formidable force of German lads. The only team now that has the potential to take on Germany should be #TeamHolland ;-) 

 

Had chilled protein shake, showered and washed, the lads cooked rice but no sauce as none is ready to buy meats. Had tilapia fillets which I bought before my workout, should be steaming them with onions, garlic and oregano later on. But, then many mouths are waiting to eat. 

 

Tried napping but too knackered and heat was building as one of the young lads was distilling. He’s building up his stock against Friday’s #WorldCup2014 match between Brazil and Colombia. If Colombia wins, the police will definitely be coming to pay us an impromptu visit as all hell will be let loose in the pavilion; the lads just know how to celebrate. On Friday that Colombia beat Uruguay, there were about eight officially reported deaths in Bogota, Colombia. That’s the latinos way of celebrating football winnings; guns, booze, lines snorted, joints and more and more with vallenato to fine tuned movements.  

 

The insecticide we used to kill and keep cockroaches away is wearing out, they are back with a vengeance. Little did I know of the different species of roaches, there are albino ones, giant and even flying ones and there are the annoying ones; little tiny twats with eggs hanging out in the butt, friggin look like minor girls with protruding pregnant belly. My best weapon against them is just hot-boiling water, once read that exoskeleton insect like roaches could survive a nuclear attack, well, they don’t stand a chance with my nuclear-hot water ;-) 

 

While roaches are busy climbing over our bodies, rats are busy munching on anything munchable; books, inmate’s feet or toes, electric cables, foods and anything their metal-like teeth can tear through, they are our number one menace here. The worst that rats does here, is urinate on anything and everything. And our lazy cats are busy tearing bin bags and jumping from one bin to another in search of good food. And making kittens, friggin lazy like some inmates; sleep all day and play all night. It beggars belief to see catching rats and feed our lazy cats with what they should be haunting and hunting. Good for them ;-) 

 

On the news this afternoon, a released local prisoner was on television singing of the corruption in prison; the lad seems to forget that corruption is systematic and institutionalised in Panama and most part of Latin America, every office, department, ministries, arms of government, functions and office are all corrupt. The lad said, inside Panama prison one can literally get anything and everything that one’s need or want. He talked of prices of guns and knives, they are so expensive that it has become a lucrative business on the inside like other things sold on the inside. The lad sang how guns were sold for $500 in the past, but are not worth more than $3000 a piece, which has become a lucrative business for Cops and Wardens. Last year, a warden was arrested as he tried smuggling a pistol, which eventually will be sold to inmates. 

 

There’s a young local inmate who walks around shoulders high, because he feels protected with his arsenal of weaponry and all inside the prison complex. I have seen pictures of revolvers, glocks, Uzi’s, sub machine guns and other arsenals ready for warfare.  

 

Cops, wardens, visiting family members and even spouses or mothers of inmates are involved in the racketeering of smuggling whatever could be sold into their locked hubby, boyfriends, sons, fathers, lovers and for the wardens and cops, they do for business; they earn much better from inmates if they successfully smuggled things in for them. Phones are three times more than the street price, so also everything here, even our food, vegetables and other edibles. Cigarettes was legalised to curbed smuggling, yet the cops as those controlling what is sold here and what they should prohibit won’t allow cigarettes to flow in freely; instead someone is controlling it and fix the price. The lads are still hoarding and selling fags at exorbitantly high price. Someone gotta smoke! 

 

Over the weekend I saw gallons after gallons of rum (proper street drink), many drank away their time and got too pissed that they slumped on chairs around the passage. Well, with nothing to do, there will always be something to do and it could be booze or snorted white lines. 

 

Tue, 1 Jul 2014 

@rmartinelli is now ex-president of panama, change of government which many Panamanians are waiting for. With everything new, many don’t know what this change will bring. But many are optimistic that #Varela will be the change they are dreaming of. Many want reductions in the prices of foods. But, got me wondering, if nobody is talking or thinking of unemployment. And for us, banged up on the inside, hope there’s something positive for us. 

 

09:33:31 time to get ready for my daily workout, been upstairs chatting and surfing at my mate’s bunk, and trouble is brewing over their water problem. There’s something to be done, and everyone believes someone will do it, but it ends up nobody did it. That’s the problem with my mate and his cellmates; they are all waiting, expecting each other to do things, but nobody will do anything and it end up, nothing is done! Lazy prisoners! Don’t wanna work, then you will eat shit and friggin prisoners shit ;-) 

 

Cooking black-eye peas which we bought from our big miser, who nicked from the kitchen. Had to wash it about twenty times as the beans is full of dirts and stones. Seems the contractor in charge of our food went to the factory and bought all the leftovers, can’t believe this is what we have been eating. Well, so long it doesn’t kill anyone. 

 

Leaving to get ready for gym…. had enough this morning already. Hope to hit back and biceps. 

 

Missing schat and my musketeers ;-) 

 

Comeback’s vijf D’s: Dromen, Denken, Durven, Doen, Doorzetten #MindsetOfAPrisoner #Comeback #Startups 

 

Problemen zie ik als een denkpuzzel die moet worden opgelost. Bovendien leert de ervaring dat moeilijke tijden juist nieuwe kansen scheppen.

 

“The darker the night, the brighter the stars,

The deeper the grief, the closer is God.” – Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Crime and Punishment.

 

“We must embrace pain and burn it as fuel for our journey.” –  Kenji Miyazawa

Prisoners: Sequestered Away From Civilization And Living In A Time Vacuum.

Posted in Behind Bars in Panama on June 9, 2014 by doingtimeabroad

“I can be changed by what happens to me. But I refuse to be reduced by it.” ~ Maya Angelou #MayaTaughtMe

 

“We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.” ~ Maya Angelou 

 

According to the December’ 13 Reader’s Digest, “Longing for the past can help you fight loneliness and anxiety by bringing you closer to your loved ones.”

 

Majority of us survive through each day or through our low moments by reminiscing over beautiful and lovely moments of our past; I have seen inmates who had old pictures sent to them, and old homemade videos of birthdays, holidays and things to help them keep part of their past within them; heard of an inmate who just got married before crashing, had his wedding video and photos sent in to help with the loneliness.  Every little helps…….#SurvivingPrison.

 

 

Monday, 26th of May 2014

Visit day, foods and things for sale floods the pavilion as inmates will come in with whatsoever was allowed or sneaked in.  Majorities of what will come in, will end up being sold to sustain the seller’s life. 

 

Woke up with my mind made up on what I’m doing today; after been away from my daily workouts due to my sore back and sciatica problem. I got up this morning dressing up to hit the gym. 

Breakfast was milky-coffee; which the lads say is a mixture of industrial waste coffee mixed with cornmeal. Whatever it was, I served me this morning, had a cup with hard boiled eggs that came on the breakfast cart and two slices of whole grain bread. Wasn’t bad for prison breakfast. 

 

The gym was scanty as many were out for our fortnightly visit. My mates helped me set out the bench for flatbench chest workout; did couple of light sets and gradually increased my weights and did couple of flyes, then rounded up with inclined. Did some pull-ups and hanging leg/knee raise. Finished with stretches. 

 

Back in, dry on water, but got one and half tank; enough to wash my gym clothing and shower. But had my postworkout meal first; whey + oats + watermelon.  

 

The lads came in with bags of whatever they had in today. Two of my cellmates went out, and back with enough food for one warm meal for two days; thus, today and tomorrow, we are sure of one warm meal a day. And for the rest of the week, we gotta hustle for either the group or individually. Such is prison life. 

 

It’s supposed to be the rain season, but it turned out  to be the flies season, the humidity, the stench of both our drainage and our bodies, and from uneaten foods are attracting them in thousands. Their presence has brought a different kind of business and someone is profiting from their presence. An inmate is selling a sticky plate that attracts the flies to it surface; once they land on it, there they remain, stuck for life ;-). I’m posting a picture of one the plates on my twitter timeline (@Doingtimeabroad) . Because of the sight, so many jokes are making rounds; like an ‘Arepa (grilled cornmeal) with flies’…. it’s usually ‘Arepa with chicken, or with eggs, or beef, and can also be with cheese. Now that we have plate full flies, we can as well have one with fried flies; probably the Chinese who eats everything that moves, might make something of it. Well, the flies are just one hell of nuisance here. 

 

The prison kitchen knew today is our visit day, so they sent rubbish for lunch and dinner, but they seems to forget that, only few people amongst the population goes out for visit. In my cell of 11 men, only 2 went out and there are many cells that nobody went out; thus, we should be able to get something good either on the lunch or dinner cart. Wankers! 

 

Ok, a mate gave me his phone to bluetooth him some of my music videos; got some badass videos on my memory cards which many here don’t have; 2Live crew, 2pac and loads of uncensored videos ;-). Not having enough memory space, had to delete some of his porn stash to make room for what I was sending. To my surprise, and a bit shocked, I was surprise to see that he’s jumped on the bandwagon of sending photos of body parts to his lady friend like most inmates here. He was the last person I thought will ever do that. Couldn’t ask him, but left them untouched as they weren’t meant for my eyes to see. Comes to mind, that prisoners can sort of engage in telepathic sex acts; get pictures or videos of the subject and think about something, then wank yourself till cum cums ;-) 

 

One of my mates can spend all night on phone-sex with his lady, whom we all believe is ripping him of all he makes from the sales of his liquor. But the lad is too in love to see; ‘love is blind’, more blind to a desperate prisoner who is seeing all is buddies hanging out online with women and even get physical contacts during visit. #PrisonLove! 

 

In prison, it’s all about desperation; hustling and bustling, nobody cares who they trampled on. 

 

Tuesday, 27 May 2014 

Woke up feeling much better than yesterday, but always take my time before getting up from my concrete bed; check which body part is sore or aches. 

 

The lads were up and about their daily rituals and also serious noise as they began their day with where they stopped yesterday. Yesterday’s exercises seemed to have helped as I feel strength on my lower back, though the sciatica pain is still there. Got about my daily routine, had a quick breakfast of hot chocolate drink with peanut butter sandwich. I have cut out sugar from all my food, except for my wine, which I need for the fermentation process. But can’t help it as I indirectly eat it when others cook; the lad that sometimes cook and shares with me, uses sugar to prepare chicken, others add it to brown beans, and in excess in rice pudding. They just can’t do without sugar; haven’t read recent scientific papers on sugar, friggin gives me something to think about. Maybe not me, but people that I know who can’t live without it. 

 

Finally hit the gym, the lads are still basking in the fragrance of yesterday’s visit as the gym was scanty. Did loads of stretching and warm up before getting into shoulders, did most of my exercises sitting. Finally did good sets of pull-ups, which is another exercises that’s really good for my back. 

 

Done with workout within an hour, back to the cell, water came briefly, when managed properly should take us through today. Heard the lad in charge of the pump and water, collected $300 each from two cells to supply them water everyday; when one is about leaving, they desperately hustle for what money they could gather for the new life they will soon be starting on the outside. The lad will be leaving soon, thus, is on a desperate mission to profit for what he does best. And that’s why water is rationed, he serves those cells that paid him first before coming to us. But he seemed to forget that it was my cellmate who bought the pump and paid to get it in. Such is prison life! 

 

Meanwhile, on the news, search for the two missing Dutch students is being intensified with elite groups and dogs being used to search a section of the jungle that they believed to be. Our prayers are with their family and friends. 

 

Also in the pavilion, three newbies were hauled in today, one is like a whale, he shouldn’t worry, we do accommodate all types; tiniest, big bones, greasy, girly or ladees typos, even men with DD cups are accepted, and he can keep his weight as he’s got loads of time to sleep, eat and sleep some more. They were given our usual prison welcome; heckling and catcallings, only our shemale wasn’t there to plant some warm kisses on them. 

 

Talking of our shemale, she took my sunglasses, given to me by a mate when he left here. She hasn’t returned it, when I asked her for it. She gave me an offer; tocar mi tetas (deep masculine voice), said, I should caress her tits, what a sweet exchange; well, I couldn’t help but laugh, her tits has become a common commodities, one will touch it for 50ct or a stick of fag. I know what’s dangling between her two legs, thus, touching her tits won’t serve me any purpose, so I let it pass and tell her to keep the old banger glasses. She is a nice ladee though and nicer to her numerous patrons on the night train! They know themselves! 

 

Whatever came on the prison food cart, wouldn’t know as we still dined on our foods from yesterday’s visit. By Wednesday we should be through with them and life goes back to what is normal; hustling and bustling. 

 

Some cells are having diarrhoea problems, from food they ate that came in from visit, the lads are so greedy; that most won’t care to warm up the food that has stayed for hours before eating. And that’s the price of gluttony. My pharmacist-cellmate will be smiling to the bank or rather to his wife when she comes for their next conjugal visit as she will go home with money made from sales of diarrhoea medications. One gotta make ends meet; most inmates run businesses from inside to sustain their families on the outside, some recruits their wives and girlfriends to help with smuggling things. On several occasions, mothers and girlfriends have been arrested while trying to smuggle in prohibited articles to their wards or lovers  ranging from mobile phone sim cards to handguns; knives, coke, joints, mobile phones, memory chips preloaded with intimate homemade porn videos meant for their lovers eyes; but later ended up with the cops, who now see what she has made for her man to keep him company ;-). The list goes on on! 

 

Had to do bartering with my pharmacist-cellmate this evening, badly in need of painkillers, hope I don’t become addicted to them. Asked him to trade some for my dinner, as I wasn’t in the mood to eat rice at that time of the evening. He offered me Pronol, wasn’t a bad deal. Always allow him to have my dinner if it’s rice as I don’t do rice anymore in the evening. I rather have them immediately after my workout. Like I always say, the stress of living through monotonous life drives many into the search of comfort in diverse things; my mate like eating, and one can see it on his waistline, others will rather snort, drink or puff. Good for them! 

 

The flies are getting on everyone nerves, even in our sleepspace, they are jus everywhere, made me spilled me tea. Will be tweeting pictures of them. 

 

Two of my mates are walking backwards memory lane as one in his bed and the other in his hammock are talking about lives back then, I’m reading and partly listening to them. That’s what prison does to people; makes you wished you cherished every of those moment in the past. 

 

Time to crash….ZzzzzZZzzzZzz! 

 

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

My day to wash our toilet and shower room, woke up early, went about cleaning and set water for tea. Done and dressed up for another day in the gym. Left for the signal spot before any of my mates woke up. But the wifi signal came on just outside my cell. Thus, climbed up, sat on top of my cell while I enjoyed the early morning surf. Others using same wifi were still sleeping, so I had access to full bandwidth of the signal as their phones weren’t busy at that time of the morning. What finally brought me downstairs to my cell was my battery juice as it drained and nowhere above my cell to charge it. By then, the lads were up and about their morning rituals. 

 

Water came early as I was about leaving for gym, had to filled all the tanks; thus, enough water to take us through tomorrow if anything silly happens. 

 

The gym is still empty, but of our faces, instead I was seeing new faces and they keen to get into routines. But for how long will they be. Some will start with great enthusiasm of Olympic athletes, after few days or a week, the magic will dissipate into thin air like a genie in a bottle ;-) 

 

My group joined me and we did arms and I added pull-ups as it’s the only exercise I can do without pains. Still seated like other days, can’t risk standing. Did some yoga moves which got our Sikh pal watching me, he later came to me; telling me, that as a sikh, he’s not allowed to do yoga, as yoga is from a different religion. I responded to him, that’s why the world is at war; because of our differences in beliefs. I’m a christian, and found yoga very very very helpful, doubt if anybody will stop me from doing it, because of what they believe. Same fella has told me how been a vegan is so good, I told him I know; but where I am now, I can’t even get the meat to eat, talk less of getting vegetables…..got me lmao! All we get are leftovers after the lads working in the kitchen have nicked and sold the best parts of the meats. Whatever is left, the cut them into cubes, and for chicken, we get the skin and someone tells me to live on vegetables alone in a place like this. I do eat my portion of vegetables which I proudly tweet all my pictures but can’t survive solely on them as I need enough calories due to my active lifestyle unlike them; sleep, eat, shit and repeat all over and over again and then add some gossiping to spice up their day. Lol! 

 

My local training partner, who was rejected when he first came here, but I accepted him into my group, came in with a paramedic who had probably at one time in his life lived in The US. But now, his residence is nowhere other than one of the local’s pavilions. He gave me a good massage and offered to come back tomorrow. When I asked him how much he charges, he said nada! All I wanted was a chilled bottle of powerade. Got him one, my co-foreign inmates won’t do that. Bless him. From what I have been reading about massage and what he did, he knew what he was doing. Hope he comes back tomorrow. Really need him, but still, I’m in doubt of what is wrong with me; I have fears that it’s something more severe. Hope it’s not my disc, every touch on a centre point at my back send shockwaves through my legs and I still feel numbness on my foot. Appalling when one doesn’t have clue of what goes on inside his own body. 

 

Since my back got sore, climbing upstairs has become a irksome task. Sometimes, I need to get up for signal, but can’t be bothered, most time I rely on my mate’s wifi to connect. 

 

Went upstairs in the evening, signal wasn’t strong enough, but ok to send off some tweets. And have a brief chat with schat, who was knackered as always after the day’s bustling. 

 

Back in a my cell, showered and crashed after a cuppa of Earl Grey tea, wasn’t bad! 

 

A bit cold all through the night, likely it might rain. 

 

Thursday, 29 May 2014 

Up before others to use the loo, sat back in my bed, reading through #BBCNews of what’s happening around the world. Surprising, the case of the two missing Dutch students are on BBC, so bad that such a thing should happen. 

 

Last night, vigil were held in the town of Boquete where they went to do social work with children before disappearing. Praying and hoping at least they find something belonging to them, a sign of hope. From the BBC article, in 2009, a 29 years also vanished from that same area; what they heck is in that area. There could be a sleeping serial killer who operates and then stay low for a very long time and probably one, who doesn’t like tourist or foreigners. Something gotta be done about this, or Panama tourism will receive a great blow, that will send it spiralling down as tourists will be scare of visiting panama, as no one knows who will be next.

 

Despite the rain, the police came to conduct our weekly headcount, having stashed our phones, we filed out to be counted and confirmed present. Left with my little wooden chair made by a lad who is now freed. Seated by our little altar or shrine as the lads has turned it to be; hundreds of rosaries hung on the statue of vrigin marry inside the little carved out structure, along with other sculptures and images on the walls. There’s no place in the pavilion as clean as this little religious spot; there’s always one faithful busy cleaning and washing the marble floor and polishing the tiles to maintain its brilliance. 

 

One will look upon prison as a place of desolate and torture; but after years on the inside, I came to find out that there’s no place on earth where religion thrives than in prison and amongst prisoners. While seated by the altar, every inmate that comes out, walked first to the front of the altar and muttered some silent, inaudible words of prayers to the virgin mother. They braced the rain for that few seconds they will observe this personal rituals. At that moment, my fellow inmates become one with their creator, heart synchronised with their body, mind and soul and their mouths utters what is in their hearts; what else will be in the heart of a prisoner standing before his God? Protection, good health, freedom, and to make it out alive. Once that part is said and done, they are back to what they are or meant to be; the one that walks with knives in his pants, will go back and armed himself, the one selling dope, will get back to what put food on his table, we the distillers will go back to our brewery to churn out more of what makes and gives the lads their #HappyHour. And we all ask God to protect us. This is prison, where men sought for God at the moment of need and once they walk out free; many must have left God behind in the cells to watch over the next man coming. 

 

The headcount went well as there wasn’t any missing, though it took some of late sleepers ages to walk out for this brief process. Got back in, had breakfast of two fried eggs with whole wheat bread; the eggs were from what one of my mates brought in during Monday’s visit, much better than what we buy here. Well, this is prison, so what we get are what have been rejected or about to expired. Went back to bed after my breakfast, slept through as it was raining; my mates were making fun of our little still-in-the-closet mate, that he should join me and keep me warm as it’s raining. The is wary of them; but from all we have heard about him, he shouldn’t remain in the dark about his life. He’s a grown-ass man, never had girlfriend, no kids, and prefer companies of ladies as friends and we heard from someone (almost everyone knew him on the street, a little too much of liquor, he’s off his pedestal, dancing and wanting to get shacked) that’s a lil queer and different from others. We sort of accept him for who he is, but he’s just one dirty gay, always know gays to be clean and tidy people, but this one is off-balance. Stashes foods and forgets about them, had to be reminded that he has food from the previous day. Most of us have one or two bowls, but he’s got like six, and three could be fill with food uneaten at a point in time. He has learned quite a lot from living with us ;-) 

 

The local inmate who gave me massage yesterday called back today, was sleeping when he came. We went through the same routine and he did very well. But I’m still in pain, as my back feels very sore. It’s likely  I will be using my last option; make contact with my emabssy and see what they can do to help, it’s over three weeks now. 

 

Another set of three newbies were hauled in this evening, from what I heard, they are not really new, maybe new to our pavilion, they are from different prisons in the interior parts of the country. Hope they enjoy their stay in their new residence. 

 

Thursday evening; it’s almost weekend, the lads are doing what they do best; music is blasting from different parts of the pavilion as the lads burn the night away. With nothing of importance to do here and been an open plan pavilion, one is free to move around at any time of the day or night, but then at one’s own risk. Many of us can brave the night and walk around, but there are also few who sleep with their cells fully under lock, for fear of sins they have committed somewhere in their past. In the underworld, one knows that, time is just a delay factor, karma will always catch up with one, justice delayed is not justice denied. I have witnessed karma crawled up and caught someone from his past. Thus, many here know who they are or what they were before incarceration, thus, they know what is coming to them; sooner or later. 

 

I’m out of data, used up my credit to make an important call; spoke with my musketeers, it’s one call I dread making, as I’ve ran out of answers or rather lies to keep them in suspense to why I’m not home by now. My boy always say, ‘you’ve been away for too long’, they don’t need to know now, well, some day in the future they will get to know, probably read my blogs and tweets, until then, let them remain and be kids that they are; innocent, free from our corrupt minds. 

 

Downstairs in my cell, everything seems to be normal and in place, exception of the lad who walks around with a bottle of Johnson baby oil and  massages other inmates for a fee, but was also involved with a compatriot of his who gets his kick from battering the masseur’s face. They were like two couple that couldn’t get along and can’t be parted; fight in the day and make up at night when we’re all dead asleep. Since the lad left, he hasn’t been treated badly like then, now look freshen up, but he does miss the lad as his phone is filled with the lad’s photos. Still got a thing or two for the lad. 

 

He was in my cell, giving quick massage to all my mates who are all having problems with their backs. Since mine began, they have been complaining of aching back; kinda telepathic ;-) 

 

I was too tired to talk or be part of the jokes that was going on. Crashed and slept off only to wake up around 2:30am to use the loo. 

 

Friday, 30th May 2014

An early day, couldn’t sleep, instead of lying and allow thoughts to weigh me down, turned on some music on my phone and did some reading. Though, the mind still try to wonder and wandered far outside the walls of the pavilion, I tried and focused on the task at hand; reading.  

 

Finally got up as the rest of my cell came to live, went through what has become my daily rituals before climbing upstairs to my signal spot. Signal is bad as the spot is packed full, sooner or later the wire mash will give way and nobody will be able to stand around that spot anymore.  

 

Sat by my mate upstairs sipping a hot cup of Earl Grey tea as I’m out of green tea, hope my consul get me some as I have placed order for some packs. She had earlier written that I should remind the lads to send in their list for our extra-shopping; I need so much, but can’t afford to get her to buy them. 

 

The local masseur came around to work on my back, still in pains, I’m afraid what I’m thinking is a minor strain could be something of a very serious nature; could be an inflamed disc, hope it’s not a herniated disc. So much goes inside our bodies, and all we do is gamble around and with it. My last resolve is to get some shots of Dexo-Neurobion, but first need money to buy them and get them in through our transporters; smuggling wardens. 

Both legal and illegal stuffs are smuggled in as nothing is legally allowed in and only if you can afford their over-the-top fees. 

 

It’s Friday and it’s weekend, thus the lads are up and about with what will make them happy and forget where they are; but for the moment, as we’ll all get back to where we left our senses after the merriment. All around the pavilion, pockets of inmates sat together sharring whatever they have or had polled their meagre resources to purchased. At the end, the weakest links, who will drink and get stupid will suffer 

 

 

Saturday, 31st May 2014 

Been up twice before others to use the loo, also took cardio-aspirin; health is wealth! 

 

Finally up as others got up clearing the meagre belongings from the floor and under the beds. It’s our general cleaning, which means washing of the entire cell and it’s my turn. But since there was no water yesterday, not sure if to carry on with it. We’ve got just five tanks of water, which wouldn’t take us through Saturday and I need about four tanks to wash the cell, wash the two shower curtains (one in the toilet, the other in the showe room). Heard the pump running, went to the Jamaican lad in charge of the pump and asked him if he will be giving us water today; he snubbed me and sent me off. Called off the cleaning, if he gives us water, which he later did, I will do the cleaning on Sunday morning. Soon, the lad will be leaving, got many wondering, if he will go with all these things he so claimed they are his; he’s busy selling everything in his cell and his mates allows him to get away with it. The prison beds aren’t for sale, but he’s selling them and also water. Well, I don’t live with him, so, I can’t say much as I don’t what sort of arrangement his mates got with him. 

 

Cooked cow lungs with curry and ate it with white rice, got it yesterday for our one-hot meal a day, also bought some avocados, that should take me through some days; basically eat them with anything, with rice, on bread, fried or boiled green plantain or potatoes, like them spicy.  

 

My masseur came today, feeling much better, but still shocking pain and limited movements around my lower back, can’t even scream or cough without feeling pains. Hope it improves soon, so I can get back to my workout routines. 

 

Two of my mates decided to take to the bottle today as they both sat down and drink all day. Ended on a good note as no one vomited or any brawl, music switched off after they had made soup with chunks of meat that came for lunch. Each showered and headed to their beds, to wake tomorrow with a bang in the head; hangovers! 

 

Enough rainwater from the evening rainfall to take us through Sunday.  Spent some hours upstairs, connected to my mate’s wifi, don’t know how long it will last, but will enjoy it while I stay connected. 

 

Signal through phones is becoming difficult, the only way to getting online is through router/wifi connection, and the latter are all over the pavilion, most cells has got two or more routers. One of the Chinese once told me, they are ordering a powerful router, much better than what we have here; with the mings everything seems possible. 

 

#Saturday, like other Saturdays, music and life fills the air of the pavilion as inmates winds down the stress of he week, my cellmates were churning gallons after gallons of liquor to their clients, some will pay instantly, others will send an #IOU note to be paid later. They haven’t had problems with getting paid unlike most dealers who regularly get into brawls during debt collecting. 

 

Finally got downstairs as signal was bad, had my 3rd shower of the day, the rain isn’t helping as it’s not falling as we want it to cool the grilling heat and maybe drive the flies away; everything seems to be driving one crazy here and coupled with the incessant noise. Some of lads out of boredom can’t begin a moment of madness; screaming, shouting for no reason, well, it’s what happens to those with weak minds. Pathetic….. #PrisonLife 

 

Sunday, 1st Of June, 2014

My day of rest, but have been having days of rest due to my sore back, forced to take unwanted days from my daily workouts. Sometimes, rest and sleep is the best medicine. 

 

Woke up early before others, dressed up and went upstairs to the signal spot, knowing fully well I will be doing the general cleaning of yesterday today. We had enough water to get the cleaning done. 

 

My mate came for me when they had all woken up, had to get down and get on with the cleaning. Was done within the hour. Showered and washed up the towels used to dried the floor. The lads started with distilling. They used up all the water, as of 9pm we were left with no water in our small tanks, just a few litres in the big blue tank for toilet use. My gossiping mate who reports what goes on in the cell during my absence wanted me to say something about it, but I refused, instead told to speak out as they are of the same country and language. Got my reserves that will take me through days if there won’t be water. 

 

In the multi-purpose hall; the two faiths took turns holding their services for their faithfuls; an ecstacy fills the air as songs, clapping all synchronising with those in pavilion 5 got the the pavilion shaking. When all is said and done, every man will go back to being what they truly are; the thief, a thief, the gossip will find something to talk about, the gambler will look for the green table, the dope head will search for his bodily high after enjoying the spiritual high, and the prison pastor will take note of all these so he knows what information to pass on to his controllers. 

 

Since the lads are on a distilling marathon, had to make way for them, out of sight should also be out of mind; less talk or gossip about the absent one. But not among idle prisoners. Out of sight literally means; bring him up on the gossip board and lets dissect him. But I don’t give a shit, grilling hot upstairs, but much better than downstairs in my cell, which has gotten me showered twice already. 

 

Had to retire to my bunk as it’s getting late, the cop on the tower seems to be in total blackout, the search light has probably burned out and they are not ready to get it fixed. Whatever goes on out there, they aren’t scare of us escaping as we know, they will shoot to kill anything that jumps over the fence; experience the say, is the best teacher, or I will rather put it this way; lessons learned from mistakes and past failures are one’s best teacher.  We have seen them aimed guns at escaping inmates and pulled the triggers, shooting them even at close range. #PanamaJusticia 

 

Finally got in when the lads had all snuggled into their sleep spaces. Took another shower before hitting my bed; not feeling too good, feverish, and also sweating. Popped in some aspirin before hitting my bunk, where I read till nature called. 

 

Monday, 2nd of June 2014

My mate who’s leaving today woke me up as he was doing his round of cleaning. Probably his last one, if he doesn’t come back like most did. He has been busy all weekend building a stash for his partner phone; lad should’ve send the phone out before today, hope the stash sruvive the rough searches by the cops, as they know many will try to leave with their phones. My compatriot who left couple of weeks ago, foolishly took his old banger blackberry with him, but was found by the cops upstairs. They will recycle it into the population as it’s not what they will want to keep. 

 

Sat up, stretching my sore back till he was done with his cleaning. Finally got down and went about my morning rituals; brushing, water for tea and used the loo. Changed to something better, and left for the signal spot. Wasn’t much there, the lads are still sleeping out after a weekend of revelling. 

 

Gradually, the lads were coming out of their cocoons, one after the other with either a cup of coffee in their hands, or sticks of fags or joints between their fingers as they continued from where they stopped last night. Clanking sound of metals on the far end from where I sat as the gym ealry birds hits the weights, some talked their way outside into the patio where they could run and enjoyed the early morning weather. 

 

Part of the gossip making rounds early this morning, was what happened during last night raving in the pavilion. So much can happen within a split of a second in prison, nothing is certain and nothing is one’s own. Nobody was talking about the binged-drinking, the rolls of joints that got puffed or how many lines were snorted. But the open-secret news making rounds is what happened to our shemale mate; apparently whatever she does and with whoever she does it with, is supposed to remain a secret between the consented parties. But something slipped and few people heard about it and in a place where men sit all day and gossip, it’s bound to spread like wildfire. Our shemale snorted, downed a little too much and got shagged, but just couldn’t hold her posterior tight; had to lubricate the lad’s shaft with some a not-sweet-smelling brown liquid. One, that the shagmeister had to cancel his ass hunting adventure. Guess that was the only news making rounds this morning, but like other news, it will fade off as we are used to such news. Nothing is new here, not even the newbies, as someone always knows someone somewhere. 

 

Stayed upstairs for a while until the spot became crowded, had to leave for my cell and took my morning shower as it was becoming hot and the flies were also out and about. Now I know why many here prefer walking topless; the heat is like a microwave heat, boiiling from inside. 

 

Long to hit the weights but can’t risk my body in this state, it will be like adding salt to an injury. Better stay on with my yoga stretching and try to get enough rest, the later is impossible as my cell is the meeting zone for my mate’s pals and also it has become a distillery. The lads distil for themselves and also distil for others for a fee. Another of their friend who used to distilled in his cell now distills in my cell, not happy about it and have made my mind clear to them. 

 

With the heat in the pavilion, everything seemed to slow down and not working out also made my day longer. But, kept myself busy with reading and occasionally winding down with #CandyCrushSaga and #Sudoku, and also read some past copies of The Economist and TIME magazines, just about anything readable. Also busy with Napoleon Hill’s think and grow rich, which is my nightly read. 

 

In my cell, my gayish cellmate, whom I have also been hearing of his addiction to snorting gave himself up when he forgot his paraphernalia in the toilet. Being an open pavilion, there’s no place he can hide and do his doping. The only place he knows he can have a bit of secrecy is in the toilet; once in and curtain drawn, nobody will suspect what he’s doing. But today, he forgot the tools of his trade which another mate found and showed them to me; being the longest-staying occupant of the cell. Took a picture to keep as evidence as I’m planning to confront him personally not in the presence of his compatriots who laugh behind him and will never confront him or any other person. 

 

The lads visit the toilet so often, made me want to ask him, if he has irritable bowel syndrome, now I know why he’s always in the toilet. My pharmacist-cellmate who sleeps above the toilet has seen him on several occasions gone into the toilet and sat there and not shitting, but groans and then pour water to make us think he has just shit. But he goes in to the toilet to snort his powder. Brings to mind, where does he get money, we feed him and even his toiletries are given to him by the rest of us. once in a while, he does get call card and later sells them, but nobody knows what he does with the money. Now everything is falling into place, and we know what he does with the little meagre money he makes, all goes into doping. Will talk to him soon. And explain to him what happens when cops finds dope in cells during search; an American mate, back in Renacer had a month or two left to be repatriated after 3yrs in panama prisons. A wrap of Marijuana was found on him by a warden, the warden asked for $50 to turn a his eyes away, the lads told him off. The warden got him off and booked him. The following day we had investigators from the fiscal office around to interview him. After all said and done, he spent another 2yrs on the inside for what he would’ve paid 50 bucks and be back home. Also in this pavilion, when an inmate whose cellmates sent photos of him snorting to his missus, and reported the lads to cops; sending cops to their weed stash and knives. The cops were paid over a grand to close the case without further prosecution. Such is the risk of doping on the inside; meet the wrong cop or warden, one is fucked for life all over again. Hope my adicto girlboy will just be ordinary jolly fella and not addicted gay. 

 

Tuesday, 3rd June 2014 

Now, I’m beginning to know how people become addicted to painkillers. Tossing around and about on my bed all night as I search and test for the right position to sleep, one that won’t hurt me so much. 

 

Woke up as soon as my pharmacist-cellmate was done with his cleaning. Went through what has become part of me on the inside; use the loo, brush my teeth, water for tea; dressed up to hit the gym, but changed my mind as I was still in pains. 

 

Everyone could see that I was in agony from the way I walk, went upstairs to my mate by the signal spot, my mate had connected my to his wifi; though signal is bad, but I do get on when it’s better.  Spent the early morning upstairs till noon when they had made their lunch; didn’t get breakfast. My mate bought some fresh fish, well, who knows how many years they had been frozen, but for us inmates, it’s fresh. Though the black Colombians from the coastal regions of Colombia whose major occupation is fishing, know what fresh fish is. Fish and boiled green plantain is their food; when the centre stopped families from bringing in fishes during visit, they held series of meetings on that alone. Can’t friggin believe, when we should be holding meetings for our basic necessities like water, sleep spaces and beds, medicare, and on lawyers robbing inmates. The lads are busy holding meetings for fish. Their argument was, they grew up eating fishes, so the authorities should allow their loved ones to bring in prepared fish-dish. Their plea was answered and since then, we have been having assortments of fishes during every fortnightly visit. But we also get those frozen ones in through our grocers who charges twice or thrice the sticker price. 

 

My mate had the fishes fried, and we had it with white rice and slices of tomatoes and onions; but couldn’t have mine dried, had to make guacamole with the last of my avocados. Wasn’t a bad combo. 

 

Long to get back to my workout, but can’t risk my body at this state. Have written my consul and hope she will be able to get me the needed medication before her next visit. Have also talked to the inmate in charge of the clinic list, hope he add my name for Friday visit. My self-medication is helping, but I think I need some proper medical attention.  Will do my best to get on the list. 

 

Didn’t allow one our distillers to distil today as the heat was just too much, if he was allowed, the distillation heat plus the heat from the cell will be killing, not even upstairs that use to be a bit breezy was spared from the grilling heat of today. The occasional rain hasn’t been helping, it should be continuous to ushered in the cool weather we long for. Not just prisoners suffering, the country is facing drought as water for livestock is drying up as there isn’t enough rainfalls.  

 

Spent most of the day upstairs after my shower and taking off my training kits as I couldn’t make it to the gym anymore. 

 

Reading and being busy with other things sort of shortened my day. Finally left for my cell, which was a bit relaxed as the lads have all packed up for the night. 

 

Showered and hit my bunk, did some reading and wait for nature’s calling……….

 

 

Wednesday, 4th June 2014

Through the early hours…….finally get to sleep after popping 200mg of diclofenac and 500mg of paracetamol, at this moment, I will go for anything that will numb the pain. A mate has told me to try weed, made my research, might worth giving it a try, maybe brew it with my green tea and drink it or add it to my salad; that will be the proper herbal salad ;-) 

 

Finally slept after some hours of reading; Napoleon Hill’s ‘The Law of Success’. A mate thought me a bit strange, as I’m reading this book, and not knowing what awaits me on the outside or life after time done. Told him, that’s why I’m reading it to be prepared and also a change of strategy. My thieving lawyer once said ‘there are plans A-Z’ ‘if plan A fails, you’ve still got 25 more plans’……. if plan A didn’t fail, we wouldn’t be here at the first place, though many are here just for being at the wrong place at the wrong time. 

 

Woke up as soon as our girlboy was done with cleaning; he cleans for the oldest by age inmate here and who was also the one that brought him in here as they knew each other back on the streets; everyone seems to know the lad as he’s very colourful in character. A few drink does the tricks, friggin transformed from what he is now to some colourful lass. 

 

Water for tea, and dressed up as I’m bent on hitting the gym today. Popped in a capsule of diclofenac, armed with my tea, my local training partner came for me, we hit the gym together. Did few warm ups and went straight into chest routines; flatbench press, flyes, declined and inclined. In-between each set we added push-ups, abs and other body-weight exercises; lunges, squat. Rounded up with yoga stretches and more abs exercises. Couldn’t believe the strength I had today and how I pulled through; the human body does better under pressure. My training mates were so happy to have me back, made them understand, that my comeback will be a gradual process until I’ve fully recovered. Even then, I will be careful with what weight I work with.  Though, I’m used to the gimmicks of the gym and of a mate, who, despite being seriously ill always want to show how strong he is; he’s been off for weeks now. His, a bit complicated; high #BP, high cholesterol, diabetes and hernia. He was due to be taken to the big hospice in the city, but they didn’t come up for him, friggin worried. He’s also on self-medication! 

 

Another round of rainfall given us enough water that will take us through tomorrow if anything happen. Unlike other cells, we don’t have enough tanks or containers to store water. So if all our tanks are filled, it takes us two days to use all up. If we fall into crisis on the third day, then, each man pulls out his reserves. Always praying it doesn’t get to that, but it does happen. 

 

Yesterday, a prominent lawyer who knows people that knows important people came and call up some of his old and new clients. Broke a new scheme that will enriched him and his cronies, but will cost the lad so much, but also for their freedom. He needs forty inmates who will pay 10grand each and those that had reached half of their sentences, then he will get them out; but deported out of the country. After hearing from different sources who went upstairs, many are beginning to question the genuineness of such information. If it’s true, then it should be a free programme that is probably will be done by the new government who will be taking over soon. But him, being a smart crooked lawyer wants to benefit from it before others know of it. Fingers crossed as we wait to know what is happening or what will happen. 

 

20:32:47… upstairs at the signal spot. The television stations have been very good to us, as they screen most of the friendly matches live, which keeps the lads glued to their television sets. I won a can of soft drink yesterday when Brazil took on panama, my cellmate didn’t lnow who was playing; betted with me blindly and I won. 

 

Breaking News; while the rest of us are busy with whatever will keep us going, some of us are having the time of their lives while doing time. Our remaining shemale and night nurse came to one of the oldest inmate here and told him to warn one his cellmate, whom apparently is owing our shemale twenty bucks for service rendered. Her threat and message to the lad was one that will make the lad pay up as soon as he get this message “tell him, if he doesn’t pay me, I will go up to the PA system and tell the Pavilion why he has to pay and what he did”. Not even a deaf or blind man find this hard to understand what the lad did; lately I have been seeing the lad stay up very late, and apparently, he’s also gotten pearl in his mojo. Probably, he didn’t have the patience to wait till his release to try it, he had to find a willing partner, and who else other than our night nurse. But, what baffles me most, every businesses in the pavilion can function on credit; you don’t wwant stock wraps of Marijuana, pouches of coke, wrap of cracks, not even my beloved wine or our potent disilled liquor as all these could be taken during a good and brutal search. Those selling pastries, cooked food, vegetables, grocers and even my pharmacist-cellmate all deal on credit. But not someone rendering services that is much-needed and one which many had been denied for years should render such service on credit. Not even on the streets; no pussy-business is done on credit, some putanas won’t even accept foreign currency not credit card. But our shemale has made herself very cheap as she is in dire need of cash to support her other habits. So she does do some favours to her regulars and this young lad happened to be one of her secret regular. But has since failed to redeemed his #IOU and his credibility has been degraded and annulled. And now our firebrand madame want her benjamins or else we will all know what happened on the said #DarkNight! 

 

My night is getting darker, should be calling it a night, too much for my heavy ears. Couldn’t help laughing when our shemale came to sent her caliente message to the lad. Guess the lad will search for money from all angle and pay up asap! 

 

Thursday, 5th of June 2014. 

Woke up late as my mates were all up before 7am, waiting for me to get up so they can do the stashing before the call for our weekly headcount. Had slept very late, as of 2am, I was still awake and woke up to use the loo by 5am. Had to dressed up for an early workout outside; that will be my first outing in more than one month now. We thought it was going to be a search, so we had all stashed, but it was just a normal headcount, none missing as all were accounted for. 

 

Used the short time to brisk-walked and did some running before hitting some sets of reverse-rows on the monkey bars behind the pavilion.  

 

Back in, went straight into my workout of the day; another all-body #HIIT #Hardcore #CrossFit with more emphasis on shoulders. My two training partners joined me and the Chinese group with their mates joined; ended up working in a group of 8-10 men. Drew a #HIIT program for them, which was excruciating, but they all loved it and their fats were bleeding sweats ;-) 

 

Back to my cell, made a protein shake and had it with peanuts. Showered as there was enough water in the cell. Had to cook as the lads didn’t want to do anything. We got about 15 eggs and I made vegetable-egg sauce, which we ate with rice. Slept while it rained, more water for us and bit of destruction in the city as the rain battered some parts of the country. Had my rice when I woke up from my afternoon nap, really needed the nap. 

 

I’m cut off again from my mate’s wifi that I have been using, probably they have changed the password. Thus, I have to head back to our signal spot which will soon collapse if the welders don’t get it fixed on time. Lately, some dope-up inmates been falling into the different potholes in the mash, many are walking with bloody scars on their legs, and none has taken tetanus shots. They all depend on my pharmacist-cellmate antibiotics. Hope it does help them fight infections. 

 

If there’s anything prison does to a man, it’s pure laziness. Many of will sit, sleep and eat through our time without moving an iota of muscle. My pharmacist-cellmate started working on Monday as the cop assistant; stand by on the door to open it when anyone is going out or coming in. Well, that’s supposed to be the cop’s job, but in a place where everyone just want to be lazy, the system created jobs for inmates for time-reduction. I chose schooling as I’m keen on improving on my spanish and also gives me time to train; school is every fortnight, but less time-reduction than work. Ok with it.

 

My cellmate is so lazy, after each day’s work, he comes in battered and run around looking for the Mexican maaseur to hit his back. Jokingly, always tell him, he should become a repeat-Offender, by coming back here after his release. 

 

Though working outside should give him the opportunity to hustle and bustle; buying things the locals had nicked amongst themselves and sent to be sold amongst the foreigners, but my friend is to lazy to hustle. The hot sun has turned him red, he complains of the work; guess he prefers sitting all day gossiping about other men, like his peers does. Glad he’s working as he disturbs my phone. Lad lost his phone in the last mundial search and is not ready to buy another one, despite all the dough he’s making. Changed my phone’s pincode ;-) that should deterred him. 

 

Back in, the lads were all knockout sleeping! Showered and got my last cup of green tea; actually got the two packs I ordered more than 3 weeks ago and also bought 6 more packs costing my in total $24! Friggin expensive. 

 

 

Friday 6 June 2014 

Up twice to use the loo, finally up and waited for the lad cleaning to round up and the lads to be done with their morning rituals. Finally got down when the coast was cleared, went through my morning rituals, dressed up for another bouts of gym time. 

 

The gym is still scanty, seems many are still in festive mode or sleeping out their hangovers. Went on an all-body assault, with some mates joining me. Had to round up early as my body couldn’t handle much of the stress; the pain on my lower back seems to persist. Rounded up with more stretching to relieve me of this agonising pain. 

 

Back in the cell, the lads were busy with nothing; bit of drinking and chatting, the only things that keeps them going after their marathon chats with their street ladies. They are all hooked on wifi, so connection is constant. Made me a brunch of whey protein, peanuts, oats and a cornmeal mixture (original given by the ministry of health to inmates with HIV/AIDS; nutritious and to meet their nutrients requirements as many can’t eat solid food at some point, but like everything in the centre, those in charge of getting these most-needed food to these sick inmates diverts them to others who are willing to pay, leaving the sick inmates to their fate with HIV/AIDS). 

 

Had my brunch and hit the shower, not enough water in the cell, but enough to catch a proper shower and washed my gym clothing. The lads knowing very well there’s not enough water today went on to distil at my disapproval. But then, we all believe, it’s our right to do whatever please us without thinking of the other man’s own rights. 

 

Spent the rest of the day upstairs at my friend’s bunk, signal is off and on. The atmosphere in the pavilion is charged as we are on our festive mode; music crossing through all cultures can be heard from different corners of the pavilion; Salsa, Merengue, Vallenato, Dancehall, Gangster rap, latino pop/rock, ranchera, boleros/ballads, and singalongs, all these are accompanied with occasional catcalls as the lads reminisce of past glories as these songs take them aback into a temporary lost world. As I have seen first hand, not many who walked or hauled in here alive made it out alive. Entranced in their music, joints passes hands, so also cups of moonshine or distil, whichever they chose for the night kill. Those opting for a stronger high, tende to go white as lines of el rey (the king of all highs) as snorted to give the ultimate high. 

 

My gayly cellmate wasn’t left out or wouldn’t want to be outdone in the moments of celebration, lately our suspicions had been confirmed with what we have seen and due to his carelessness. Lad depend on us for everything as he seems to have no one around, despite living in panama for more than twenty years. He does get money to buy wrap of coke from one of the numerous pharmacists in the pavilion. But one thing his dealers failed to provide is where to stay and consume his purchase. The lad rather prefer our toilet which the curtain will provide the perfect hideout to indulge in his desires. On several occasions he has forgotten the tools of his addiction on one of the water tanks. When called to pick them up; he makes up excuses that they are for cutting nails….ya right! talking to kindergarten kids! 

 

He always walks into the toilet, sit down and pretend he’s having a shit; one could hear the groans of a hard shit coming out, then the silence, also comes occasionally calling of attention to know who’s around and how close. If everyone seems far, he unrolls his arsenals and begin his processing. 

 

Today’s incident was #caughtoncamera, while sitting on my bunk, he walked in and went through his check-sound; nobody was interested in his shit. He went on to unroll his purchase, then I stood up with my phone and recorded everything that went right inside the shit house. One annoying thing, is the amount of tissue paper he wasted on his addiction, and we all gives him when we have excesses, mine during my embassy visit; what I get is for three months, but don’t mind giving him and others does same on visit days. The other thing about him, he’s a poor junkie, unlike the Mexicans and some Colombians who snort a whole pouch on one go, he tends to use his little by little. 

 

He stopped drinking as that brings out the animal in him, but the snorting also is turning him to something else, he hoards food for days in different bowls and forgets that he has food stashed away, until they all get spoiled. And the drinks seems to always make him what to get shagged, so he was adviced to stay away from booze, which he has so far been able to restrained himself, but not from angel dust, which is his new buddy. 

 

We are yet to hold a meeting about his case, one of my holy-arth-thou cellmate wants him thrown out, but then, nobody will take him, I’m against throwing him out as he will end up in the gym hall. But then, we can’t help him as talking won’t stop him and neither does the prison system have any program to help weaned addicts off their addictiosns. Thus, he’s on his like everyone of us, he has to find his redemption himself and set himself free from his own demons. But, will definitely talk to him about all I have seen and not what I have heard. 

 

Earlier this evening, we heard barrages of gunshots and pellets or bearings from shotguns raining on our roof, one would have thought, it’s finally raining hailstones in panama. But being in one of latin america’s notorious prison, we know what it was. That quickly got our stashing mode activated as none knows why the bullets were raining on us. If it’s an escape attempt by an inmate from amongst us, then we will definitely get a hard visit from the cops and that will be a brutal assault or search on us. 

 

Others went upstairs to fine out what was going on, then we saw inmates running in large groups, some armed with machete, knives and one was firing at another group of inmates. Cops came in and the large group withdrew to their pavilion, which happen to be pavilion 5, the most religious pavilion in the centre; daily night vigils and prayer meetings and yet they hoard the most arsenals of warfare in the centre. 

 

The story of today’s incident goes like this: three inmates were been transferred or relocated from another pavilion to pavilion 15 (another hot pavilion, where heads rolls when their war starts). These three lads being from a rival gangs were seen by the gangs from pavilion 5, who then break free despite the cop stationed outside their pavilion. A prisoner pastor who was at the scene intervened and the warden in charge of the lads had to stepped in-between the charges. The larger group with arms tried climbing the wire fence to get to the lads being transferred, some got torn by the razor-sharp wires. When the cops finally came, the large group of attackers started dispersing to their pavilion. The pastor, warden and rapid response by trigger-happy cops saved those three lads, but then, they survived to fight or die another day. 

 

Meanwhile, the lad whom our queen been pursing for his late payment for nightly or obscured service rendered seems to be playing hide and seek with our queen, soon she will catch up on him. Lad just couldn’t wait to get out before trying his pearl-in-dick ;-) 

 

And the rumours or what was supposed to be a secret on inmates who had done half of their sentences paying to be released was all false news. It spread quickly and about, the high profile lawyer who proposed that business to some inmates denied all allegations linking him to that rumours. He doesn’t know, majority of us does nothing all day, other than chatting and entranced in our indulgences of porn and more porn ;-) 

 

 

Saturday 7 June, 2014

Some will be sleeping out their hangovers from last night sleeping, while others are still on the benders. One of the best drinkers is languishing at the immigration waiting to be deported back to his country; when the lad starts drinking, he doesn’t stop until the fourth day. Friggin wonder how his liver and kidneys (if he’s got two) handle those loads of liquor. Well, as of 7am when I was awoken by my mates cleaning today, there was still noises upstairs from those drinking. My first and only question to the lad; ‘is there enough water’? As of the time I went to bed, we had just one tank left and taking a look, it has gone half. The electric pump was running, but not sure if the lad in charge will give us some today. 

 

The lads went on with their cleaning and used up almost what we had. When I finally went downstairs, there wasn’t much left. Did remind them of my question earlier in the day. A little rain later in the evening gave us few more litres of water, didn’t have to use my reserves. 

 

Have had my breakfast of oatmeal + eggs upstairs at my mate’s bunk. Thus, no food, just showered and climbed my bunk for a quick nap as I didn’t get enough sleep. 

 

Still in pains, and just when I thought about my masseur, he came in and helped with massaging of my sore back; explained to him how serious some part are. He was careful as not to cause more harm, his massages does help. Sold me an ointment which is usually given at the clinic, something I really need, thus, have to buy it, set me back five bucks. 

 

Spent most of the day in my cell, one of the lads distilled a tank of his mash after seeing what profits his pal reaped last night from the sales of his liquor. The lads sells vegetables and want to also be part of the bootlegging business. At the end, he will be like others who dabbled into many businesses but couldn’t keep none as they went out of business due to dealing in credits. 

 

Finally made it upstairs later in the evening, where several parties were holding. Behind the cells, was puro salsa and rhumba as the lads were kicking out funky salsa steps and street style salsa dance. What else should one expect from the men locked up and sequestered away from civilisation and time; to many of us here, our time has stood still, live ceased to continue for them, they are like men travelling in a time vacuum. Like that little hamster who runs its wheel day in and day out. 

 

Meanwhile, my gayly cellmate has probably had little too much of toilet sniff; he’s been acting too hyper, told him to try and get some sleep. Couldn’t sleep either, guess someone must have given him a free line to snort as he rarely does a complete pouch. And I believe he must have paid for that line with his mouth service, many are talking about his new pals in the pavilion; men who would love to have him on his knees in front of them. Some come to the cell to check him out, call him out for hours. Hope he’s responsible for whatever he brings into the cell as I won’t answer his call when cops discovers his stash during search. 

 

Stayed up till around 1am as I had a long power nap earlier in the day. When I finally got downstairs, the cell was quiet, that a pin dropped on the floor can be heard. 

 

Hit my bed and did some reading only to be disturbed by a flying cockroach to hit me on the face, friggin sent me scrambling around. Little fcuker escaped, need to get a can of baygon or raid; should order that with my consul, If she will add it to my shopping list. 

 

 

Sunday, 8 June 2014 

Last to sleep, should be last to wake, but not with my singing cellmate; lad wakes by 6am, always with a song that has no meaning. Guess, it’s his own way of handling the stress and distressing himself. Have warned him several times, our morning begins by 8am, that’s the norm in the pavilion. Noises are not allowed after 10pm and before 8am, but many don’t give a shit about those rules as they are constantly broken. 

 

While waiting for them to round up, I did some yoga stretches on my bunk. My back is still sore and seems to be very weak. Praying it’s nothing serious. 

 

Finally had my turn, went through my rituals and made a cup of tea, drank some and went out to have a good shave as I was beginning to look like captain caveman. My mate who wakes up and walk around with towel all day had water in the shower room, but wasn’t ready to leave his chattering with his mates and take his shower had me waiting. Finally pressed him to round up so I can take my turn. Finally had a brunch of cold oats + peanuts + whey protein + cinnamon, was finally and better than the rice + sardine the lads cooked today. They had all had their breakfast, earlier on. 

 

Salty lentils mixed with leftover meats from yesterday (pork tails, chunks of beef), took some but couldn’t eat it as the salt content was way too high. Dumped it in the bin, and made egg omelette with fresh parsley, tomatoes and onions; kept it for my dinner, which I ate with whole wheat bread. 

 

Some are still drinking, but a bit quiet now as many will be going out for our fortnightly visit. Many are getting themselves groomed in preparation for the visit. Two of my cellmates got their hair cut and washed clothes to be worn tomorrow. 

 

Enough water today, and the lads are busy distilling, so much to sell, as there’s enough clients to drown in their potent distil. The local inmate masseur came today and gave me a much-needed massage; still helpful with the pain. 

 

Upstairs, bit quiet also, but busy by the signal spot as inmates are rounding up their messages for tomorrow’s visit. 

 

Sat through a short documentary on NeXTV on the two missing Dutch students who has gone missing for over two months now. It was a heartbreaking report as they did a reconstruction of the events that lead to their disappearance. So much has been said about that area of panama; many tourist that has gone missing in that area and never been found is rising and lately a young lad of nine years has gone missing. It baffles me, if nobody is thinking of a pattern in all the disappeared, there could be a serial killer lurking around that area. A chat with #WildBill; an #American who killed several people and buried them, and was arrested with a #Dutch Passport could yield something on and about the pattern the killer(s) operates. 

Someone has to walk into the mind of a killer to understand how he/she gets kicks and lurks after victims. 

 

The parents of the girls looked worn-out as they pleads  for their safe return. Praying their prayers be answered, but time is running out. The Panamanian government is also pleading and asking the Dutch government to help them. I’m surprise they aren’t asking their biggest partner; The Americans to help, or is it because the missing girls are Dutch nationals? 

 

21:57:43……….soon, weekend will be over! 

 

“There is no greater agony than bearing an untold stories inside of you.” – Maya Angelou 

 

“I’ve learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance.” – Maya Angelou 

 

#PrisonUntoldStories #TheDarkSideOfPrison #PrisonExperience #Lockup #MindsetOfAPrisoner #Gevangenis #Panama #Nederland

A Compatriot Repatriated, What Become Of Us Left Behind The Walls And More Tales of Wonders From Behind Bars.

Posted in Behind Bars in Panama on May 25, 2014 by doingtimeabroad

 

“The most authentic thing about us is our capacity to create, to overcome, to endure, to transform, to love and to be greater than our suffering.” – Ben Okri 

 

Failures (or temporary defeat) are meant to provide good information about what doesn’t work

 

“Neither temporary defeat nor adversity amounts to failure in the mind of the person who looks upon it as a teacher that will teach some needed lesson.” – Napoleon Hill (The Law Of Success)

 

Updated my blog today; tales of events that moves and shapes the lives of men sequestered to the ends of the world, to where many had gone and never returned and those that came back had lost the better part of themselves to the demons within the walls of Prison. Everyday on the inside is a battle to survive the odds of surviving, we face dilemmas, obstacles and unknown hurdles which we are meant to overcome by our resistance, our adaptability, our endurance and our wits, and even with the very life that we fight to save. A life full of uncertainties, but also full of HOPE! 

 

Monday, 12 May 2014 

Sciatica pains since last week and forced me to take days off from my workout. Everything I do, I do them with extra effort and in pains, ran out of painkillers, and my pharmacist-cellmate doesn’t have what I need. I have to work on crude remedies ; ginger has been helpful, drinking loads of water. And yoga stretching helps relieves some of the pain. Sitting, lying down, walking and even standing for a long period of time put more stress on my sciatica nerves which sometimes numbs my right foot. Not a good sign! 

 

Woke up bit later than my usual time, but first in the cell to rise. Went through my rituals, about leaving for the signal spot, then others started rising from their slumber. Our day, our week has just began and it will be a hectic one. 

 

Upstairs, few were connecting to their loved ones or friends, most were still arranging with whoever will visit them today, to know if they are actually coming. Got online, all messages and emails that were waiting on the queue started rolling in; pictures from schat on my little girl’s birthday came in, and I believed from what I saw, they did had a wonderful and blissful birthday bash. Glad that schat can make turn little things to amazingly massive and impressive occasion ;-) 

 

Sent all saved tweets from Sunday and added few ones before signal became slow. Had to leave for my cell. Whoever had cleaning today, has finished, made oatmeal as I prepared to hit the gym. Few spoonful before leaving. Those going for visit got themselves ready for the brief moments with their missus or girlfriends. The lad that had dominoe inserted in his mojo came in and spoke to my boxer-cellmate, then the others picked it up, that he has gotten his name on the list to get his mojo pierced. Friggin beggars belief that everyone is jumping on this frenzy. Got me wondering if anyone amongst the first sets who had theirs done has used it and told them of his experience. Anyway, hope he knows what he’s doing. Easily swayed! 

 

The gym was almost empty because of today’s visit. Did some sets of benchpress, flyes, inclined and declined presses and added some pull-ups and loads of stretching for my aching back. Felt bit relieved.  

 

Back in, rushed in for a quick shower and washed up all my gym stuffs, including my training shoes. Finished with my shower, then came the heavy downpour, filled all our tanks and every available containers. 

 

The lads made it back before the downpour, lucky fellas. Enough food to take us through three days, but all fried stuffs. There are foods we only eat during visit days; shrimps, burgers, salads and proper home-cooked fishes and meats. Thus, every visit day is our Christmas. Enough food for friends and enemies ;-) 

 

The lads who had been drinking since yesterday are still on their benders, they won’t stop until the pavilion run dry. The capitán was here to warn about last night noise, that if it continues, they will storm us and take away our fans, televisions, stoves and heaters. They did that to pavilion 8, when they went to demand for guns used by inmates during shootouts with cops. They were under lock down for three months, took aways visiting and conjugal rights from those who had. And all their electrical appliances were taken, and they had searches almost every week. Hope these lads here will heed to this new warning! 

 

20:52:55 upstairs at the signal spot and signal is awfully slow, nothing is coming through, like the portals are airtight closed against us. By 9pm, nothing happens, will be heading down to my cell for an early night and to do some reading. 

 

A debtor owing me 5 bucks from wine he bought months ago, had me connected to his wifi. Something I should get, but then, the headache that comes with it during search, place to stash it as it is way bigger than our phones. 

The connection was superb, downloaded all news update and other articles I needed to read later, and which kept me till 2am. 

 

Finally got my eyes shut for the night…..ZzzzzZzzzz

 

Tuesday, 13 May 2014 

Woke up twice to use the loo, the latest was by 4:30am, had to boil water and killed the annoying cricket that won’t allow me some sleep with its chirpy noise. And some sneaky roaches, friggin hate them. But too bad for the cricket, at the wrong place and at the wrong time. 

 

Finally up around 7:30am and made my way to the signal spot. Signal, not at its best today, maybe later in the day. Might have to wait a while to catch my surf, others are coming up to wait and wait till they also get a surf. Those with routers will find it a bit easy getting online. 

 

Not feel like hitting the gym today, still in sciatica pain, should get more rest. Hope by tomorrow, I’m strong enough to return to my workouts and my trainers would have dried up. 

 

My training mates came for me, gave them routine for the day. Can’t wait to get back, nice lads, better the lots of wankers here ;-) 

 

Nothing special today, but friggin hot, no water and no rain, but we have enough to take us through the day. Also got my reserves which will come in, if it continues for days; nothing is certain within the walls of prisons. 

 

We still have enough food from yesterday’s visit; but friggin salty fish, wasn’t bad, but the salt was all I tasted in the fish. My mates and salt, a bag of 500g of salt on Monday will be used up by Sunday. Got me wondering if they just friggin drink or eat it raw? Have preached of the ills that comes with salt, but they just can’t do without salt and oil! And one is really suffering from severe high blood pressure that defies medication. 

 

Spent most of the day upstairs as my cell was grilling hot, one of my mate was distilling another batch of his mashes, while the others were waiting in line to cook; some days we all sort out our foods, other days we cook and eat together. 

 

Had an early night, hope to wake up early! 

 

Wednesday, 14 May 2014 

Up before the lad cleaning today got up as he likes doing his cleaning as early 5:30am, friggin nutters! 

 

Brush up and got my tea pipping hot, and left for upstairs, signal was ok for the first few hours. Having dressed up for gym, had to leave and get started with my workout. Felt more better than yesterday. The gym was scanty as I made a very early call. Had a good workout with my team, exception of the local who later came late, after we had finished. We did an all-body #HIIT #Crossfit routines and had abs finishers. One of the lads made a shake for the group; we all added to it, I bought ice and got powder cinnamon. Others added oatmeal, milk, peanuts, and melon. Wasn’t bad, refreshing and nutritious after a hard day. 

 

Still waiting for protein I ordered through a mate, almost three weeks since I placed the order, paid him and yet to get my stuffs #prisonbusiness is also #monkeybusiness! Friggin risky! 

 

Nothing appetising and healthy on the prison food cart today; sausages and sweetened cinnamon tea came for breakfast with our balls of bread, lunch, only heard about it; supposed to be chicken soup, but we always get chicken skins in place of real chicken flesh, the lads are busy selling the real thing. And for dinner shredded chicken came with our half-cooked rice. My postworkout was rice with eggs I dropped in one of the lads soup to cook. And dinner we cooked macaroi with pieces of the shredded chicken. Not bad, added my permasan cheese to it and some chillies. Enough for today ;-) 

 

Back upstairs, busy at the signal spot and signal is bad, can’t go back to my cell as it’s bloody hot. 

 

Spent the rest of the evening at my friend’s shack, which is cooler with fresh burst of breeze coming in from outside through the iron bars. Much better than being in my boiling cell, who knows, the lads may be cooking as they always do; late night soups ;-), some of us do our time with food! 

 

Thursday, 15 May 2014 

Been my day to clean our toilet/shower room, woke up sometime after 6am, set water on the stove and went straight to my cleaning before the others woke up. One of my mate had connected me to their wifi (which they change the password daily), so when I woke up, there were messages from schat and was able to quickly update my news apps ;-) 

 

Done with cleaning as our PA system came to life for our weekly headcount. Went out with my improvised yoga mat (towel cut in twos, use one and wash the other), did some yoga stretches while the count was on; exercises to relieve me of the sciatica pains. All accounted for, none missing or any escaped. Straight to the gym and continued with more stretching and did some pull-ups and dips; less than an hour, was done and back in. Had a proper shower and washed up my clotting. And had oatmeal with peanuts as my postworkout meal.  

 

Enough rain today gave us more water to take us through couple of days, the prison authority are probably relaxed and happy as the rain is doing their water work. Only hope my mates will be wise with using water, as anything can tip this state of equilibrium and throw us into a state of droughts; days on without water. 

 

One of my cellmates hooked me up on his router, but they kept changing their password daily, not bothered though, but very useful to be able to get online right from the comfort of my concrete bed;-)

 

Had an early night, washed all out utensils before taking my nightly shower. There’s so much dust buildup in the cell. Will make out a day to do proper cleaning; my bunk and other parts of the cell, but have to wait as there’s no cardboards and other needed materials in the groceries.  

 

Friday, 16 May 2014

Sleeping early got me up around 2:30am to use the loo, and behold my phone’s screen was filled with message’s notifications, signal was up through my mate’s router. Had to stay up till 4:30am, reading and tweeting and all from the comfort of my small world. Finally went back to sleep and woke around 6:30am, and no intention of hitting the gym today. 

 

Earlier, used the opportunity to search for what’s best for my lower back and the sciatica pain. From google’s results, seems #DexaNeurobion is a better option, and few inmates had had this alongside their juicing; the latter which is becoming a new frenzy and trend after the stone in the dick amongst many of the lads here. Should be working towards getting some vials of Dexa-Neurobion while Dr. Porter is here, I will have him administered the dosage as I don’t trust many of prisoners-turned-doctors who are busy injecting anybody who’s willing to part ways with $3. 

 

Was starving, opted for a hot chocolate with milk and hints of cinnamon, had it with peanut butter sandwich, filling, but got me thirsty and wanting iced water. Got some ice and had a fill of real refreshing cold water; thirst quenching….yeah! 

 

Been upstairs, signal is off and on, being patient is the only way to get about getting online. 

 

Two of the lads, good friends, just got a call and went for medical evaluation; signs that they are leaving soon, likely on Monday. They have been waiting for this moment since three years now; caught with nothing. Not in panama, once you are suspect, you definitely gotta do time and real hard time. Hope the lousy greedy workers upstairs don’t demand more money to get their release papers signed and get them going. Even then, they ain’t free as they will be remanded at the immigration for indefinite amount of time. That’s the snail-speed process of the Panamanians. 

 

Talking about snail-speed; in the case of the two missing Dutch students, everything seems to be heading to nowhere. All the tips coming in seems to be false and leads to dead-end! Read on twitter of two suspicious body found around the area they thought to have disappeared. Praying that it’s also a false tip or info, despite the optimistism, at the back of our minds we still fear for the worst. Their parents are dead worried, from the pictures on television, they have lost great amounts of weights. Hope something positive comes soon. 

 

20:41:41 had had a bit of my wine with my lunch, got me napping for two hours, friggin needed it, helped with my ached back. It’s time I get on the ass (not in) of the lad in charge of the clinic visit, gotta get my name on the list for the next round of visit, if there will be a next round. But the best option, is to buy Dexa Neurobion from outside and have Dr. Porter do the injecting; much safer than having the many prison-turned surgeons inject me, don’t trust them. Can’t afford to leave my life in the hands of another banged up; well, sleeping every night, I tend to know exactly that, I trust my cellmates as they also count on me to watch their backs. 

 

I’m hook on wifi, though slow signal, but much better than the phone hustling with routers for signal ;-) 

 

A new lad was hauled in, unlike many of us, he’s got many amigos here. Well, not really amigos as their relationship didn’t end on good notes; most are people he did deals with on the street and they felt he duped them, thus, they are happy, the gods of underworld has brought him to them. One of his would-be enemy was singing and rejoicing on seeing him. This new lad was busted with darkened money, and other government documents which he uses for his scams and fraud schemes. But luck ran out on him when cops busted his residence on an early morning raid. Busted with two ladies (maybe they were having a threesome, who friggin knows) and with other colleagues of his. According to the lad who wants money from him now; the new lad is known as shagmeister, like getting laid with his pals girlfriends. In prison, men washes their dirty laundries as they have nothing to do. We call it singing or ratting! 

 

Little does the new lad knows, I know more about him than what he will tell me. Moment he stepped in, the lads catcalls and tried to heckled him, but I guided him through the throngs of sweating men by flexing my hard-earned muscles ;-), but then the joke changed as many shouted that I’m taking my bitch in. It’s what we do to all newbies, but no violent welcome, just the best reception anyone can get in prison, most especially when our shemale is out, she can plant a warm kiss on their cheeks and tell them she will be available later in the day, exclusively for them. That alone sends the pavilion into sea of laughters and catcallings. What a life! 

 

Well, from all I have heard about this new lad, he definitely got to watch his back constantly, as many of those he scammed are here or their people are here and they won’t hesitate taking it on him if he doesn’t pay them; and these lads are hungry and in need of money to do their time. 

 

Back to me, as we are all doing our time individually, every man bears his own cross and sentences. No matter what friendship they have, everyone is on his own when that time comes. 

 

Saturday, 17 May 2014

We were roused from our early morning deep sleep by my pal from upstairs who came to warn us an ongoing search in pavilion 5; the local’s pavilion housing the biggest religious congregation in the centre, and also the most dangerous and vicious gangs in the centre. 

 

His warning got us all up, but my mates were bit relaxed, maybe still coming out of their slumber. But when the cops outside made moves towards our pavilion, that got them scrambling, the older man fell while trying to untied his router where he had it high above the pavilion, lucky, he wasn’t injured. 

 

All stashed and ready, but it was a false alarm as they didn’t come down here. They only moved to positioned themselves around the perimeters as the locals were scattered all over the field outside their pavilion.  

 

We had our stuffs stashed all day, until it was clear they won’t be coming this way. Green light to pull our arsenals out from their hiding places. 

 

Had our general cleaning today after stashing all our stuffs, set a full pot of ox feet on the stove, which I later cooked Colombian Sancocho (kind of soup, but friggin rich) and with green plantain and green bananas and loads of vegetables. One the lads cooked their type of rice; literally fried rice, burnt! 

 

Did some cleaning and washing, and still off from my daily workouts due to my very-sore back. The pain can be excruciating and unbearable, but then what can one do, I’m out of strong painkillers, but did popped in two paracetamol tabs of 500mg each. Didn’t feel any change, I’m adviced to get the nuerobion intramuscular injection, it might help as many here who had had same problem had that injected and they felt some relieve. Sore and ache back and sciatica problems after cardiovascular diseases seems to be the most complaints amongst inmates here. And it’s not just among the elderly or those leading sedentary lifestyles, but everyone of us seems to be affected by this ills. Then, it comes down to that, our concrete beds and immobility is adding to our medical and health woes. Yet, many doesn’t realise that. 

 

Spent most of the evening upstairs by my mate and the new lad, who seems to know loads of people here. But, his reputation with those who knew him is not something to write home about, seems to had stepped on many toes while a free man. Then, little did he know that tables do turn around ‘what goes around, comes around’…. some of the lads are on his ass for dough gone on bad deals and unfulfilled promises. For now, they are talking in low voices, and because of my mate and me, they are sort of calm with him. In the past, an inmate was pounced on for unpaid debts on the outside. A creditor found that he was slammed in here, called his pals to collect his dough, turned into a serious fight. Such could be the fate and lot of this new lad. He definitely gotta start doing his time watching his back. But he’s very confident that he will be out soon, if his lady presses the right buttons! Hope she does and in time! 

 

Still in pains, what I’m reading online about lower back pain, sciatica nerves injuries is not something someone in prison without access to medical aid should be reading; When this happens, when you feel this or that, when you don’t see this or that….and loads of stuffs that ends with……. see your doctor for immediate checkup. For now, I will rely on my self-medication and also try to get my name for the next clinic appointment. If I had money, should be ordering Dexa-Neurobion for my self-medication.  

 

Bits of revellers doing what they love doing on weekends, which actually helps with doing time, of which can be very depressing if you don’t have any clue of what to do with your life once banged up. Thank goodness for their creative minds; music, joints, moonshine and later comes the highs and tiredness which automatically send them to sleep in peace; forgetting the day’s problem. 

 

 

Sunday, 18 May 2014

We all went to bed last night setting our alert level to #CodeRed; expecting an early morning raid on the pavilion. But as we rose up from our slumber with the dawn of a glorious and cool Sunday morning; sign of rainfall later. Nothing happened, our sentries were on full alert and on the hour lookout and for the rest of the day. 

 

Had a cup of lipton black tea as I’m out of green tea, later had oatmeal + cornmeal for proper breakfast, showered and went upstairs, but in serious pain, had to get back my cell, where I spent the rest of the day either on my bed (almost bedridden) or sitting on the edge of the bed reading and tweeting; still hook on a mate’s router. 

 

Schat, the kids and her visiting brother with his family went out eating at Nandos, reminded her that daddy’s chicken should go to my boy as he’s the man of the house; bless him, he claims the television and living room are his, while the girls could have kitchen, pink bedroom ;-), well wasn’t left out in the Sunday roast, pictures were sent to me and messages from everyone. Missing them….. but then, first thing first! Time is everything! 

 

Back in the pavilion, we also had our own Sunday roast, got a pound of ox lungs, a mate bought another and we made stew which we all ate with our fried rice; Colombian style. Wasn’t bad! Whatever came on the prison cart for lunch, got no idea. But for dinner, took the legume that came and warmed it up, adding chillies; filling and enough for today. 

 

22:00:05 finally left for upstairs as it was becoming unbearable hot in the cell due to the distillation one of my cellmates was doing. Told him about the water crisis, since I’m not in the mood to upset the truce in the cell, allowed him to use water from the general tank. Though he tried going out for rain water in our dugouts ponds outside the pavilion, the cops refused him; citing his punishment. I heard the cops is under a 72 hours punishment for letting many inmates out at the same time. The captain saw the lads outside and told him he will be doing extra time and for that period of time, nobody should be out. 

 

Upstairs signal is pretty bad, since I haven’t been coming up early as I used to, I wouldn’t know how bad it is in the morning, but by this time, it’s very bad and slow. 

 

Meanwhile, one of the two lads who will be release tomorrow was on the search for someone to lend him money to have his mojo worked on; lad wants polished domino inserted in his wiener like many of his compatriots are doing. He wasn’t expecting this release, but as his folks had forked out enough dough to close the case, good for him. Wish him the best and that he doesn’t return like many; #RepeatedOffenders 

 

Talking of a #ComeBack, an older inmate who was stabbed by a lad he pursued for debt payment of $20 and almost got paralysed had done a 2nd term in this centre; first did 4yrs and now almost 6yrs and about to leave. His partner is long gone; live in panama and worked his time pretty fast. The lad went upstairs to get his paperwork processed for his release, but was told he has another case pending and he had been sentenced on that case to another 40 months prison term. If he can’t fight his way out, which I doubt, he will be doing a 3rd term in the slammer. Not a good thing, as it will gradually drive him into the abyss! This new case is on document violation, wouldn’t tell us and don’t care to know; we all have our crosses to bear. Each man for himself and God for us all! #PrisonSlogan! 

 

Monday, 19 May 2014 

Up in pains, but lay back and waited for the lads to round up with their morning rituals. My mate made cornmeal porridge which I later ate after my morning rituals. Was filling and nutritious as he added eggs into it. After that, downed a cuppa tea, ran out green tea, so I made do with the lipton, which I still have few bags left. 

 

Tuesday, 20 May 2014 

Went to bed late last night or early this morning, and my mate cleaning the cell woke me up when he called me around 6:15am to asked some flimsy question. He must be friggin out of his mind. Vented my anger and disapproval at his attitude, which wasn’t the first time he did that. 

 

Couldn’t get back to sleep, and signal been out,  had to climbed upstairs to my signal spot, which was also empty as the lads were still deep asleep. 

 

Actually, it seems my mate who had me hook on his wifi has got me disconnected by changing the password. No hard feelings, signal was ok this morning, at least good enough to send my tweets and chat briefly with schat. Left for my cell and got ready to hit the gym; but not in my usual form. Friggin miss my active workout, but can’t afford to do much as my back and sciatica nerve has gotten sort of handicapped. 

Was able to do some yoga stretch, back stretching, push-ups and pull-ups. Spent about 40mins and left for my cell. That was enough for the day. Showered and washed my stuffs. 

 

We got a pack of Ox foot for Colombian Sancocho, I did the cooking; have learned quite a lot from my cell mates about their cuisine. Everyone had his fills and satisfied, but some wanted more, not enough for a second round. 

 

My pharmacist-cellmate went for his fortnightly conjugal with his missus, later came back with rice and fried fishes. Got a piece of his fish, passed the rice, which I later had for dinner with the salad he brought and my yesterday’s lentils.

 

A new lad was hauled in this afternoon, a francophone africain to join his partner who has been here with us for some days now. At least I have people around to help revive my french. Yet to meet the lad, but I have heard loads about him through my mate who knew them from the street and from his partner who has been here for a while. He’s welcome to the jungle and to the real world of the underworlds; to the darker side of darkness, sooner or later he’ll hate or like this place, but his ability to adapt rapidly will be his only saviour.  

 

Spent time with them, how small is the world, me in Europe and he in latin america, and he seems to know people I knew; but meeting in prison is not where to relate as each man will give his life for his survival. A man knows what he’s about to do might take his life, but he’s willing to give his life to save that same life, such is the prison paradigm! 

 

Lucky chap, came in yesterday, bouught a shack made out of cartons by a Jamaican inmate who happen to be jack of all trades and master of all; so he says. The lad farms, builds bunks out of cartons and even added sliding doors, he’s the plumber in charge of our water system and controls the electric pump. He also fixes any type of electrical appliances and he’s probably the best cook, and he’s a natural healer, but first on the queue for the unstaffed clinic visit. Above all, he loves my brew! Soon he will be leaving, and he’s selling whatever he can lay his hands on. Hope he doesn’t sell the cell with all his cell mates ;-) 

 

A friend gave me a vial of Dexa-neurobion, no needle to get injected, when asked around, everyone directed me to my compatriot who is never in lack as he’s the juice master in the pavilion and as they said, he had enough; gave me a new syringe whiich I later took the needle out as the Dexa-neurobion came in its own syringe. Would have gone to Doc, but was too late, had to meet an older man after asking those he had administered injection before and they confirmed he knows what he’s doing. He gave me the shot for free, which others charge 2-3 dollars for administering shots of anything. 

 

Also had one of the ladee-wannabe lads did some back alignment; laid on my belly and he did three movements stretches that got my back cracking. After all done, shower and scrambled to my bed for an early night, which wasn’t that early as I was still awake by 2am; did some reading and candy crush saga. 

 

And finally closed my eyes to catch some sleep where my dreams are never as scary as my reality; #PrisonExperience! 

 

Wednesday,  21 May 2014 

My pharmacist-cellmate cleaning today got up around 6:30 and went about his cleaning, he tried been discreet and quiet, but still got me up. 

 

Got up with the others and went about my morning rituals, the Dolo-Neurobion injection of last night seemed to have relieved me of some pains, felt a bit at ease this morning. 

 

Still out and off from workout, had an early shower and breakfast of lentils; leftover from yesterday.  

Finally made my way to our signal spot, as I been cut off from the wifi signal; most lads who don’t have personal routers get connected with about three wifi networks and pay 5 bucks each per week. That’s loads of benjamins to get connected. I rather wait on signal on the signal spot. It’s patience, but does come through.  

 

Upstairs was crowded as everyone wants a piece of the spot, the pressure is on the wire welded on the passage between the row of cells. It’s caving in due to the pressure exerted on it and constant water is also causing it to rust. Many had fallen through the pockets of holes in the wire and it’s usually the drunk. They all ended up with ugly injuries and scars, many had to get anti-tetanus shots. The sight of the scars on their can be scary and makes the fainthearted not to walk that passage. At night, I sometimes climb down and walk around to my cell. 

 

Signal wasn’t bad at that time of the day when I got upstairs; almost 10am! Was able to chat with schat, who was busy as always, sent some tweets and read what’s happening in the outside world; quite a lots of news and so much happening that will make us look like aliens when we finally get out. #Rehabilitation #Resocialisation 

 

Some days, the lads in the kitchen decides churning out absolute rubbish in the name of food to us; for lunch and dinner, what came on the cart was such. Lunch was chicken skin greasy soup and half-cooked rice, and dinner greasy mincemeat, passed both and had oatmeal for lunch and mix vegetables salad for dinner with peanuts, wasn’t bad; should get the picture on my twitter timeline: @Doingtimeabroad 

 

 

My surmise about prison; it’s set up for failure, which one will, and in some, repeatedly. But the human bodies and brains are resident and able to adapt, improvised, and even bounce back from failure to success. Treated unfairly and in a harsh world, where one have no control, but one’s pathway to success is in his hand; you can control how you handle the situation. From my ongoing experience, the constant and incessant threats and actual violence makes one more aggressive and less sensitive to violence; evidenced in many prison violence all over the world; blood and more of it and it’s all nothing, there’s a kick and the rush of adrenaline and testosterone when it happens. Makes us want to see more of it; a little verbal altercations which should have ended verbally, but peers and gangs pressure will spiralled it into a deadly ending. 

 

And thats exactly what happened today, sitting by the signal spot; sweat from the heat and friggin flies over the area. A lad, seated downstairs in the passage was attacked by another, the attacker’s mate joined in what will become a bloody brawl with the lone lad bleeding from his right eye. Wasn’t fast enough to capture the moment, but got some shots of the aftermath. It takes just seconds or splits of a second for life’s changing event to happen to a man; good or bad. But in this case bad, wouldn’t know the extend of damage done to the lad’s eye. Like everything about prison, everyone minds his business. 

 

After the fight, the bloodied lad and his companion (they are the most stubborn group in the pavilion, always late night drinking and music, violating our unwritten rules) all came out and camped at the entrance of the attacker’s cell, laying siege at the front of their cells. The executives were called in to breakup the siege, after hours of intense negotiations, the siege was broken up and the lads dispersed. But as we all know, that just the beginning of the beginnings of greater things to come or rather, darker things to come. All parties involved will forever walk looking over their shoulders and stand with their backs against the wall. And on constant full alert for reprisals.  

 

Before the brawl, I had noticed the attacker was on flipflops smoking his joint, while the other lad sat down chatting, the attacker then went in and changed into trainers; which is always ideal when one need to get something done that requires standing on one’s feet. When he came back, his mate was behind him, as soon as he launched the attack, he mate pounced in, wasn’t a fair fight, well nothing about prison is fair. The government running of prison is full of injustice and inmates running other inmates are full of nepotism and corruption. Just like Dr. Phillip Zimbardo’s prison studies shows; put a man a place of authority, he abuses it. We elected fellow inmates to run us, now they seems to be abusing it, they are running all the illegal businesses here, and favouring their own. Such is human ;-) 

 

Spent the evening with the two new African brothers who were arrested same day but hauled in differently; taking them through our norms and ways of life in the pavilion. The leeches will want to cling on them for whatever they can squeeze out from them, but they should be careful with whom they talk as they are seen as fresh and probably loaded. Being streetwise they definitely know how to go about life. But their witnessing of today’s bloody fight must have shaken some blackness out of them ;-) bienvenido en la jungla :-) 

 

Signal was a bit ok, enough to do what I needed to do. 

 

Left for my cell as I needed some good sleep, for tomorrow is our weekly headcount, which comes very early in the morning. 

My British mate hooked me again to their wifi network, password was changed. Was able to get online in the comfort of my bed as the router is directly above the iron bars outside of my cell. 

 

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Struggled through the early hours to sleep, was still up by 2am, finally get to close my eyes, but having a good position with my aching back was another pain in the ass. Managed to closed my eyes when the cell’s light came on; checked my phone for time, friggin 6am, doubt if I had slept for 2 hours before the little toothless fruitcake lad who gave the young lad a blow job after a night of binged-drinking switched the light on to do another’s mate cleaning. The mate has paid him, but not so friggin early and with light on, most of us can do our cleanings with the cell’s light off, and only with the toilet’s light. But since yesterday, the toilet bulb died out, and nobody is ready to replaced it; it cost me good prison $25 to run the line and get that bulb fixed and I have been the only one replacing it when it burns out. Without the light, my mates will be urinating on the floor at night and my bunk is just right beside the shit corner. 

 

Couldn’t sleep, lay awake till the cops came around 7am and the PA came to life, stash our phones, armed with a cup of #EarlGrey tea; just opened the pack schat sent, already given more than half out, hard to eat alone, except you want to be that greedy and tight-fisted lad. 

 

The headcount went swiftly, and I rushed in as I want to catch up with my sleep. Sitting outside my cell, while waiting for my grocer-mate who has the key to cell (we always lock the cell when going out for headcount; den of thieves), then I heard the commotion outside, guess it’s a fight and it must be the lad that almost lose an eye yesterday. When all came in, I went out to find out. It was the lad who almost lose an eye, and one the lads that fought him. When we all went out for the headcount, one his attackers had gone out with a knife stashed in his pants, as he knew what awaits him whenever he loses guard. 

 

Rewind to the day of the fight; when the fight was over the lad who was attacked had his mates to his attackers cell, the held them up all evening, the lads had to sleep with their cell firmly under locks. 

 

When I got to the gym hall, it was all muddy as water they spilled was all over everywhere, one of my compatriots was unlucky as his mattress was soaked, and the lads were walking with muddy flipflops and trainers, some were trying to dry up the place. What had happened, didn’t take a second for the havoc and harm to be done, as one of the attackers walked in, the lad who almost lost an eye launched at him with a dumbbell, cracking his lips, wouldn’t know how many teeth is missing. But it was bad, that the cops had to take him out, but by the time cops came around, his knife had disappeared and his attacker who was out for a revenge was gone; saw him running in with dumbbell in his hand. Cleaned it and gave it to the Mexican who owned it and who was about to begin his early workout. 

 

After all said and done, peace was restored, meeting held, some in favour of throwing the lads out, and others against; the house seems divided! ‘things fall apart, and the center cannot hold’. At the end, the lads are still walking around, probably armed to their teeth, knowing fully well what will happen to them if they loose guard. 

 

Took an agonising nap as I was still in pain, what can I do. My training mates came to see how I’m doing, they sort of give me strength; one asked if there’s anything I need. Nice fellas. 

 

Our water crisis seems to be getting out of hand, when there’s no water, our drainage and sewage system builds up with dirt and it began to stink badly and this is the fly season, they are friggin everywhere, even at night, friggin annoying. A Brit inmate had his embassy bought him some of those fly sticky tapes, damn, they are hundreds or thousands stuck on the tapes, I should get something like that. 

 

“Expecting is the greatest impediment to living. In anticipation of tomorrow, it loses today.” – Seneca

 

Earlier this morning, my compatriot who has been waiting for this day since last year december, was taken away for repatriation, lucky chap, for them going to the islands, it’s much easier than for us going to mainland Europe. But as I later found out, he is probably the last fool around here, knowing fully well that he will be striped and search before leaving the complex, he foolishly left with his old banger blackberry. His buddy and my other compatriot begged him to leave the phone with him, he refused. Well, the cops upon searching him, found the phone and seized it. Doubt if the cops will use it, they will recycle it by sending it back to the population to be sold; maybe for 50 or a 100 bucks. That’s what happens here, cops come in, search, and seized stuffs, then got them recycled by sending it back to us to buy. My cell mate once had his router taken during a search, which almost gave him heart attack; we bought it together and was supposed to use it together. But he was always busy downloading high quality (MP4) porn video clips and always on #Tango or #Skype video chat with his numerous sidekicks of girlfriends……. hahahahahaha, remind of an incident my pharmacist-cellmate told me that happened with this old mate of ours. 

 

They along with other foreigners with permanent residence in panama (both are married to local women) were on a program to take out 2 months off their time. On the last day of the program, the old banger approached one of the young beautiful teachers and requested for her phone number. The young lady gav him what he wanted; ran him down, that the old lad felt the earth should split in two and suck him off like a vortex. 

 

Back to my joint venture on router same mate of mine, I finally got him to pay me my part and keep it for himself, while I stay up late or wake up very early to get online. When the router was taken, he almost died…..lmao! But to our surpise, he picked up the signal of same router/wifi days after the search in the pavilion with the name I used; #BehindBars! The lads finally came to him to ask him for the password, which he refused, until they pay him. Whatever happen thereafter I don’t know. But as far as I know, my mate is in his middle fifties but can’t take his eyes off anything that has tits; even our shemales, he always call them in and offer them a can of his products and for free. 

 

One thing I have found out about prison; it makes people become more redundant and lazy, not fit for any purpose. Locked up, locked away from society and reality, away in a time vacuum, left to rot, sedentary lifestyles takes over, the mind is closed to anything new or to any change that should be taking place. When time is done and finally out, ex-cons are like alien maing the first contact with humans, full of curiosities. And also like a sleeping and dormant volcano with anger on the inside ready to explode. 

 

The other things I have learned in prison; it turns men who were probably cool guys to aggressive debaters, always making strong arguments on lousy subjects, sometimes I did suggest we having a proper debat…..hahahhahahahaha! some thought me to be way out of my mind. Our debate can start as early as 7am and could last all morning as no one wants to be defeated; a news headline on television can trigger it, even a picture of a naked women or a porn video clip. Just about anything could trigger our heated talks that sometimes could draw lines of enmity; as in my case with a lousy two-timer. Done five years before and back again; I read and study about fitness and health and then wake up every day to hit the gym, but he wakes up everyday and set a pot of rice and beans on fire and walks to my cell to gossip. I told him to make it a bit later as some days, it’s too early. Then he brought my workout into the talk, Ssssshed him and asked him to leave my cell, though his partner is in my cell, but the lad rarely talk to him. Since that day, we don’t talk to each other. And I love it that way, the less people I talk to, the better for the state of my mind. 

 

The other thing about prison, it turns a crook automatically into a professional or an expert; with my aching back and knowing what’s wrong with me, I’m careful to ask anyone to massage my back, but lad who use to trained with me volunteered to help, sang praises of himself how good he was as a masseur on the street. Set towels and laid down, gave him diclofenac gel and a hot ointment, he said he has his, went and brought olive oil. The first thing he asked me, ‘creó en Dios’…..do you believe in God? At the point, I believe in anything that should relieved me of this agonising pain, well, he didn’t pray as I thought he was going to. But he started with the massage. I have two books; dynamic yoga, and Massage, aromatherapy and yoga (practical handbook). Been reading this books and I know I can do much much better than what he was doing to me. He doesn’t know the flow and he was pounding my back. Had to tell him to stop and thank him. I asked for it, and I got more pains.

 

After he left, I sat with the book and did some yoga movements to help with my back. Popped some diclofenac and decided to take a nap. 

 

Slept for a while, with pillow under my back for a bit of relieve. The lads were cooking in the cell and heat and flies were building up in the cell. Had to leave for upstairs, nowhere else to go. Everyone has got one mate or two they hang out with, mine is an African who prefers being alone. Much better in a place like this. 

 

Friday, 23 May 2014

My body clock is tuned to wake me around 4am-5am, but since I’m down with the aches, I ignored my body clock and continue with my sleep. Finally got up with the others. 

 

Feeling much better now, but still got a long way to go. The diclofenac seems to be helping me, had a mate massaged my back, but told him what to and to be careful with the inflamed area, too bad, as I don’t know how serious is my injury; both legs are affected by the sciatica nerves. If he mistakenly touch my vertebrate, I feel a shock waves running through my butt to my legs and could be numbing to my right foot. 

 

Managed to pull myself through the day, did what need be done. Yesterday, I did washed my towels and some Tee shirts, but today, can’t do any washing, will leave them till when I’m much better. 

 

Made fish fillets with permasan cheese, which we ate with patacones; fried green plantains, wasn’t bad, been a long while I ate patacones. 

 

One of my cellmates has been drinking since dawn with his mates, glad they’re not doing it in my cell. Despite the booze and whatever is going, it’s relatively calm in the pavilion, well, the lads involved in the fight are the only ones tensed at this moment and will be living with their backs on the wall. I finally saw the lad who was punched in the eye; he looked really fucked up, wondering if he will ever see daylight again. His left eye is swollen and black, guess that’s lesson from #FightClass101 from prison, when you launched at someone unexpectedly, you should also expect same. He and his mate pounced the lad, got his eye bloodied, but the lad had the final laugh when he got one of them unaware after the headcount; despite the knife the lad had on him, he gave him a good one that has gotten his eye sealed for good. 

 

The lads are also preparing for monday’s visit. Furthermore, our sex drive is taking many of the lads into the pursuit for the ultimate glory in the bed. Finally, it has come to me. Two of my cellmates have finally had their dicks pierced and the stone done in them. Actually saw a picture of one which he sent to his cyber girlfriend or maybe more girls. At least for them to see what they will be getting when they finally get to try their toys. 

It’s beyond belief why they are so eager to do this, when most are not sure when they will be going out of this place. Some who were getting tattoos done by a local inmate who comes in everyday to scribble whatever they want on their bodies, are now left with unfinished prison artworks; the lad was on one of them right in my presence when a message came from upstairs that he’s freed. Got me laughing very loud, as the lad who was getting tattooed look dumbfounded ;-). The tattoo artiist being a local has to leave at that moment and promised the lad that he will tell a friend to come and complete the job. Ya right! 

 

While the younger lads are busy getting polished dominoe piece inserted in the mojo, some older inmates are also in the line for what they believe will transform their sex lives. And one of them is my old banger grocer in my cell, he’s like my cats, full of curiosity, he’s bent on getting his tiny weiner done also. Well, came in one piece, will be glad if leave here same as when I walked in. 

 

Saturday, 24 Mei 2004

Since the last search that search on pavilion 5, we’ve raised our alert level, most routers are taken down every night to be put up again the next day. Have gotten my tiny bits into their stashes; earphones, unused chargers and usb cables. Whenever they come, we are ready. 

 

Up for the day, still in pain, but bit better than previous days. Our general cleaning day, got my stuffs from the floor as others did same. Left with my cup of earl Grey tea, out of green tea. Upstairs was busy with inmates trying to reach their loved ones or business associates. At least to place orders for monday’s visit. 

 

Didn’t get breakfast today, on my way back to my cell, the breakfast cart came, took a cup of warm chocolate drink, enough for me. 

 

The lads cooked rice, which I later had as brunch with the boiled eggs that came for breakfast. Not a bad combo, better than nothing. 

 

My mate and his mates are still drinking, he shared what happened last night; a young lad was drunk and out, while sleeping, a loco mexicano who does all the dirty jobs here took out his balls and dropped it on the sleeping lad’s hand, the others took photo of it, which sooner or later will appear on one of the social media. Prison is not the right place to get drunk. So much has happened here in the past after inmates had little too much of our potent distill. A Dominican got a young Guatemalan pissed and got him laid in his bed, that was after his first gay experience with the Jamaican guy who is on his way for a sex reassignment. The Ex-president of the pavilion who is in here with his brother in-law, but as our gossip goes, his wife has left him for another. So he took comfort in the arms of the young Guatemalan, offered him the choicest of bunk, well sealed from prying eyes; always got the lad pissed before doing what his body craves. Last Christmas, he asked me to snap both of them, the young lad didn’t want it, but when he finally agreed, and came closer, the old cow pulled him over and planted a warm-alcohol fuelled french-kiss on the lad’s lips; well, had to snap them. So much has happened under the influence of controlled or rather uncontrolled substances as nothing controls anything here. Another lad has had his eyebrows shaven more than three times and his face covered in full makeup after bouts of drinking sessions with his mates. In my cell, one had vomitted, another taken to the clinic and another had a one-week hangover. So much to write about our little but el grande mundo; so much goes on behind these concrete walls. 

 

It’s weekend, and what else do we do best at this moment? #LaFiesta , music from different parts of the building as inmates drown in our distil or high from whatever is giving them a good high tonight. Many can’t sleep without these stuffs. 

 

At least, they are having good fun and well behaved, hope the peace and tranquility is kept this way tonight. 

 

The other habitants in the pavilion; our feline friends are busy making babies, three cats now have altogether eleven kittens, sooner or later we will be competing for living space with them. Hope they help reduce the rats population. 

 

Talking about pest, the one in season now are the flies, they are everywhere, gigantic, dwarf, assorted colours, and they tend to be active all day. Also mosquitoes, these ones are scary as dengue is spreading in the city, yet to hear of any incident here; maybe there is, but our bodies are just keeping everything till it can’t take them no more. Then it collapses! Hope it’s doesn’t end that way. 

 

I’ve got my back and sciatica pain to worry about, hope I will be well enough to resume light training on Monday. Friggin missing my workouts, though I’m using the time to read and do some writing and also play candy crush saga; friggin addictive. Recently, read an article, that it’s not video games itself that makes gamers aggressive, but the angers comes from failures to pass through certain stages in the game or losing at the game; that’s true! As I can be friggin mad when I can’t get through some levels ;-) 

 

Ok, gotta round up and get this thing up asap! Doubt if I will proofread it before publishing, any open window on the signal grid, should be getting it uploaded. 

 

Our lives, our fate and destiny shouldn’t be dictated by a temporary derailment, or failure, but by what have learned and how we make out of this temporary setbacks.

 

“There is great and lasting lesson in every reverse, and in every defeat; it is a lesson that could be learned in no other way than through defeat” – Napoleon Hill 

 

“What is to give light must endure burning.” – Victor E. Frankl  

 

“You do the crime, you do the time, and you ought to be able to move on.” – Fred Patrick

Prisoners In Pursuit Of Happiness And The Search For The Ultimate Sexual Experience.

Posted in Behind Bars in Panama on May 12, 2014 by doingtimeabroad

 

Put water in a pot, it takes the form of the pot, in a kettle, it takes the kettle’s form and in a cup, it takes the form of the cup. One have to possess fluidity, and adaptability  to survive incarceration.  

 

Monday, 5 May 2014

A new era in panamá politics and for Panamanians, and most likely for the many men and women incarcerated within the walls of their overcrowded prisons.  Last night, with others in the country, we sat through the night watch speculating on who will be at the helm of leadership in this tiny controversial country and steer her to where he so desired. 

 

Every drama always come to an end and so was the drama-filled politics in panama that had candidates throwing scandalous bombs at each other, unearthing secrets dealings upon dealings with all the world’s baddies and money from cartels to fund election campaigns. And even recorded death threats and some made do of their threats after an outspoken lawyer was assassinated in a restaurant. Finally, the underdog #Varela won the election, and it came as meteorite impact on the ruling party, and the person most hit was the president himself @rmartinelli, as he was so confident of his party and anointed candidate, who had the first lady (the president’s wife) as his running mate winning the election. Moreover, there was no room for manipulation, the electoral tribunal didn’t give him the room to set about his plans. Too bad! 

 

My day began like most days, woke up to use the loo around 5am, think I had slept for four hours or a little more, despite the chirrup sounds of crickets that rain has sent off from the woodlands behind the pavilions into our cells. When I came in last night, found about three crickets smashed by the lads. Damn things can be friggin noisy and annoying, but a knackered body will sleep irrespective of noises around, that’s one thing I have conditioned my body to do; sleep under any condition. 

 

Upstairs, signal was ok for a while, but the stench of our drainage underneath was overwhelming, had to move to my friend’s corner, who has a shack built on top of a cell, only goes down to use the toilet. But shower and urinating, he does them upstairs like others living on top of the cells and all the waste flows down, when there’s no water, they all pills down there. Last week, our president was on our PA system warning about someone who has defeated during one of the nights amidst our water crisis and launched his hot bomb down into the passage (we should be expecting more of this frustrating attitude, as does with cells and water won’t share). The passage has become breeding pond for mosquitoes, food bank for rats, and God knows how many bacteria are building down there. Have only went down there twice since my incarceration; first to pick up my fork which a lad threw down while washing our dishes, and to pick up my sim card that fell down, then it was much better as there weren’t too many people like now. 

 

Left the signal spot with my phone set to download some torrents files, dropped it at my friend’s bunk; when I later checked, it was 65% full, should be through by tomorrow’s morning. 

 

Had banana and peanut butter before hitting gym, which was scanty due to persistent water crisis which is yet to end. With my reserves to take me through three days, I was confident of working out. But hope water will be turned on soon or rain, now we need the rainwater, no matter how dirty it is. 

 

Had a good chest workout, careful as my lower back still hurts. Need some strong painkillers to help numb the pains. 

 

Done and back in, the cell was quiet, no water, everyone is banking on their reserves. Hit the shower and washed my gym clothes, showered. Had muesli + peanuts which I had soaked before hitting the gym. Wasn’t bad, filling and satisfying. 

 

The lads later cooked rice; it’s crazy how the black Colombians cook rice, burnt and dry. They set the pot, pour a good amount of vegetable oil, pour a handful of unwashed rice, sort of fry it till it turns brown, and starts burning. Then, they add the washed rice and little water, and cooked it till the rice is burnt to have crunchy rice call ‘arroz concolon’ hope I got the spelling right. At the end one is left with a rice that look half-cooked and dry, if you ain’t got no real teeth, this is not your typical rice ;-) 

 

They cooked some today and I got a scoop for myself, later ate it with peanut butter. Like a mate always say ‘rice get cooked in their stomach’ that’s why when they are in toilet, one can’t sit or stay in the cell. Took a power nap after my half-cooked crunchy rice meal. During my nap time, the door was thrown open for the lads to enjoy the weather for an hour. Not many went out as there’s no water to shower after sweating. Some did play football and others were at the back working out on the mokey bars that were welded there by El Abuelo before his extradition to The US! 

 

Slept for a while, had to wake up as smoke was everywhere from the machine used in killing mosquitoes larvae. Didn’t know they will be doing that today. Left for upstairs, fresh air and less people as most are outside on the patio. 

 

20:14:18 upstairs, friggin hot, the lads are acting bit weird, guess the water crisis is playing on our minds, at such moment, tension is always high amongst us. Any wrong words or motives could backfire and lead to unpleasant outcomes. Thus, everyone should stick to himself.  And the best way to avoid people; silence and pay no attention to whatever they are doing? And that’s exactly what I’m doing, avoiding every lousy and lazy conversation. 

 

Tuesday, 6 Mei 2014 

Up to use the loo, and there ended my sleep, another day for me, to survive and make the best of it. My lower back still hurts as hell, sciatica pain! But won’t stop me from working out today, just gotta be careful with what type of exercises I’m doing. 

 

Made it upstairs with a cup hot tea, it’s like the flies here don’t sleep, they are everywhere in the pavilion, friggin annoying when they land on one’s body. The signal spot upstairs seems to be where they are most. Worse thing could happen there, one can easily drop his phone while trying to drive away the flies. Thus, just let them do what they are doing. Signal ok to round up my last download; Pharell Williams #GIRL full cd ;-) 

 

Despite the signal jammers placed around the perimeters of the centre, we still get online, but it takes patience, which is one thing that is not lacking in here and with prisoners. We are used to waiting, even in hurting or maiming others, it all involves being patient enough for the right moment. Once you’ve found a spot with good signal, either you stand there or sit down with your chair or tank of water and do all you want to do. The majorities are into making calls, chatting or searching for women on different social networks. Many had had some luck, but at the end, those women expect much from the lies they had been fed; got busted with tons of coke’ making these ladies believe they are the next Pablo Escobar of the just arrested Guzmán of Mexico. And the women being the lazy types, breeding at home and waiting for a man with bags of money, easily fall to those lies. 

 

One of my cellmate, met one on one of the social networks, she has three kids with three different men, and all the men are in prison. Each one told her what she wants to hear and she fell for them, the lads with little money they are making and beliefs that if they hitch with a Panamanian women, they could get an early release, lured her into having conjugal with them. But further along the line, their stories seems not to be holding up, maybe money ain’t forthcoming as it used to be, she ditches that one and meet another. Heard one her child’s father is a friend of another, after she dumped the first lad, he gave her number to another in another prison and the next one called her, after the first wrangling of ‘where did you get my number’ and the vague answers that comes by, she succumbs to the same lines of stories. Went on with the new affair and ended up with another child. Now the little lad in the cell is dating her, the lad did all sort of businesses, at a time we partnered and sold fried chicken, but selling on credit sent us out of business; perishable goods are always sold on credit as one can’t afford storage or keeping it till next day as in the case fried chicken. 

 

That’s our lives in a nutshell!  

 

Back to my day, hit the gym with passion, had a wonderful shoulder workout. Some of my partners were out, though they came a bit late, but we had a fantastic #HIIT #Hardcore workout. Rounded up with good stretching and abs exercises. Early in and early out.

 

Still no water, though it came briefly earlier today, enough for about four tanks, which the lads will used up before late afternoon. Still using my reserves, was able to shower and washed my clothes, and saved the water used in rinsing my clothes for toilet use. 

 

Before leaving for gym, had sent two tanks to a mate who has water pump connected to the main prison water supply line. He finally filled the two tanks and sent them to me. That should take care of my water need tomorrow. 

 

Sexual Gratification Among Prisoners; 

 

Seems the hope of having the ultimate sexual experience is becoming endemic in the pavilion and among all prisoners in the centre. Maybe, it’s been locked away for a long time without ‘proper’ or ‘real’ sex that is driving the lads to prepare for ‘the ultimate sexual experience’ when they are finally released. But then, nobody is thinking; not all those that walked in here alive, walked out alive or functioning in their full capacity as a man should do with a woman or with another man.  I and they have seen many fallen amongst us and taken out in bodybags cold as death. And they were all dead men! 

 

There’s so much risk around what they are doing, started with few lads convincing those who were about leaving (now gone, and I’m wondering if they’d call to give testimonials of the magic the stones are doing) to get it done, that they will get a good lay on the outside. A man slammed up for years with the real thing, will believe in anything, like he has forgotten how to make love or sex with a woman or with a man if his choice has changed within the years spent in the slammer with companies of other men ;-) 

 

Today, a lad who had dominoe turned pearl inserted under the skin of his mojo couple of days, had the dick-artist put a finishing touch to it today. He was in my cell this evening, telling his compatriots of what wonders the pearl in dick can do or have done. Eavesdropped on him telling of a mate who had his done before his release and had called them to tell of his exploits on the streets.  Armed with this wonderful news, nothing is stopping from completing his sexual gratification expedition. 

 

Another inmate, an old man in his late fifties and diabetic, had his done and almost died from bleeding. From what I heard, he’s also taking aspirin which we know thins blood, he was left bleeding and Dr. Porter was called to attend to him. He was sent to the clinic the next day and survived the experience. The Dick artist or doctor from Pavilion 8 (one the pavilion’s housing foreign inmates) seems to be enjoying boom in his new-found business. And an old inmate who does all manual jobs to fend for himself is also making money as he’s the one who grinds the dominoes into smooth round stone. With stories coming in of what the stones does, I believe will be jumping on the bandwagon.  

 

During the exploit briefing in my cell, my old cellmate who’s more or less addicted to porn, showed a very keen interest, for months now, he’s been having bouts of serious high blood pressure. Being connected, he’s got access to the clinic more than all of us in the combined, but all medications seems not to be working. But after seeing the stash of porn videos and pictures of naked women in his phone, I’m beginning to have a second thought as what is the cause of his high blood pressure; he might be watching too much porn and that has probably overworked his fragile old heart. In my cell we all know him as porn hoarder, he once had a tablet which gives him a widescreen view of his porn videos. Had to sell it as it was always causing his heart to flip each time we have search. Now he has samsung and also with a bigger screen; more of a phablet! Hope after listening to the exploits of pearl in the mojo he won’t be going for it like others had done blindly. 

 

This stone is the new frenzy among inmates now, like I wrote earlier on, probably being lock away for such a long has made many forgotten what to do with a willing partner, they have to now depend on others are telling them they should and could do when they released (many are still awaiting trials; some been here for years). Meanwhile, been slammed here and with so much time at my disposal, I have been able to read far and wide, couple of days ago, I was flipping through pages of cosmopolitan which my consul brought along with other magazines during her last visit. From my collections of magazines, there others also which are women magazines, actually found quite a handful tips which will much btter than getting stone insert in my mojo. Have also downloaded and read quite a handful of books, sex manuals ;-) and magazines on such matters and some even came with pictures of positions. Once in a while I do share some crazy, but healthy tips with schat, all she say; ‘wait till you get back home’…. time in prison does prepare one for a whole lots of things, some are just bullshit; like honing one’s sexual skills, which many of my mates here are doing. like I always tell my cellmates when things goes wrong in the cell ‘I blame Martinelli for hauling us in here without something to do to keep us busy and functional’……. one can’t blame prisoners for not being changed and transformed to what society will expect of them after years of incarceration. Many will spend those years on the inside, doing absolutely nothing, some will be reliving their lives on the streets right on the inside. Others will try to hide their true nature, but sooner or later , they will be who and what they were meant to be. 

 

As long we remain men, with testosterone still pumping in us, we will always crave for the ultimate sexual experience. Though there are others who are on the other side of the fence, while many are busy juicing with roids, the others are busy wanting to become more beautiful and curvy, they are the ones who kind of sets the hormones in the lads racing whenever they see them outside in their bikinis and colourful attires; these are our ladees! 

 

We have a resident ladee with us, whom the lads have grown tired of seeing her as she has been here for too long, some months ago, we had a younger one hauled in, whom our resident queen wasn’t too keen about as the new one was younger and more curvy, and had gotten some good hands to fix her well; massive DD on her chest and behind her were two slabs of silicon that will get some ladies turned green on seeing her. Our resident queen, wasn’t please as attention left her to our new princess, she finally let if off when they had the clash of tits! She is finally calmed now since our princess was released, but still keep contact with some lads who are willing to share some intimate experience with her upon release. She was a smoking chimney, always puffing on joints upon joints, and that gave her loads of friends which our resident queen doesn’t have as she doesn’t do joints, she does fags and angel dust and drinks like a fish (wondering if fish drinks that much). When she starts, she can get dirty and very willing with her several in-the-closet partners. Sometimes she gets deep into it until the dawn of the new day catches up with her, then she is seen walking from the party to her cell, drunk and half clothed; but always a pants to cover what still makes her a man, but the tits are free for all to see and if you’ve guts at that moment to touch ;-) 

 

Sometimes she is so broke, that she goes begging whoever she comes across, sometimes as low as 50cts, then the lads been crazy and horny will want a feel of her tits for the money they will pay. Thus, a feel of those silicon fillings for 50cts. Not a bad deal! Others who wants something more exotic, has had her performed lab dances during their mate’s birthday celebrations. And during all festivals; Christmas and New year’s eve, she gives the pavilion what we don’t have; a thrill of a lady, and a drunken and dope up one! At least someone hits his bunk or hammock smiling. 

 

The ones on the other side of the fence, are the ones that gives the most. Whenever they are let out on patio, the lined up on the side of their fence facing us, begging the lads for money or fags, and some of our lads are also prepared for what they want; money for something. Sometimes the lads demand for flash of some flesh, always the tits as nobody wants to see a third leg. Money are thrown over the fence when the flesh is shown, the clients and seller both satisfied. When they lined up along the fence, it friggin look like the red light district back in Amsterdam; adorned in colourful see-through bikins, hair well done and mascara on their faces, but in daylight, they are ready for work. The view is always a beautiful one and should be documented. Some of the lads go some extra mile, by exchanging phone numbers and BB Pin, so they keep up with proper conversation and more picx for what they do when curtains are drawn. Whatever we do, all amounts to doing time and keeping one busy. 

 

Some took their feelings to the extreme, we once had couple of inmates who were shacking up with each other; it was open-secret affairs, which everyone were aware of. Then their were four active couples who were cohabiting, some were in different cells, but always get together when they have the urge to be together or fill like getting laid. Gradually, one after the other left, leaving their heartbroken lovers wet and dry, with time, like they say, they soon forget each other. Life continues as they sought for new loves in the arms of waiting men, who had for long, longed for a warm cuddle ;-) 

 

Well, whatever the outcome of our new frenzy of pearl in the mojo, hope it pays them well. Since this new craze started, it has made one of my cell mate confide his well kept secret to me; want something to grow his mojo. Told him, one secret, he should stop eating the way he does and lose some weight, then his mojo will be proportional to his new body size; small body size and small mojo, but when you are overweight, it’s very obvious that your little weiner will be noticed. The Lad eats every now and then, eats and take a nap, wakes up 30mins later and straight to food. Well, something is driving him to food, stress and a bit frustrated about the system and failed promises. Thus, food and our distil are the only comfort left for him. His boss has promised to help spring him out, but the boss-man has turned his back on him, now he’s on his own; when sentenced, he will end up doing his time. No money to buy his way out, as that is possible at where he was arrested. 

 

Like many others here finding comfort in different things; gambling, booze, daily brawls, chatting and watching porn clips all day and night, he choses food and booze which he does occasionally, whenever I let him have a sip of my brew, if the gallon is not empty, he ain’t sleeping, drunk and vomited twice in the cell. Hope he finds his redemption. 

 

Back to my day, it’s 22:18:09! The whistle just gone off! Back in Europe it’s 7th May! And my little girl’s birthday, conceived before my incarceration and put to bed on this day in 2010; she knows me through my pictures and video chat when signal was good for Skype, since the jammers were installed, we rarely talk. Then used to get daily voicenote from her; tells me all she did in that day. Hope I get home soon. 

 

Someone is either celebrating something or just want to drink, as salsa has been blasting all evening from back of the cells, the radio has just gone soft now since the whistle went off. Some days, someone just want to drink and get drunk, and forget about his problems for a while. But then, wake up to the same problems! What a life! 

 

Ate brown beans this evening, pig tails (they call them rabito) came with the beans, took the beans and passed the tails, but I’m friggin bloated and it’s been gas war all evening. Got me wondering how the all Mexican cell sound like when all noises are dead at night; friggin orchestra of natural wind instruments…….hahahahahaha! 

 

Will take a sachet of Andrews salt to help with the gas ;-) 

 

Earlier today, after my workout, was called out along with my compatriots, that we have a consular visit, but it was the volunteer who makes out time to see us. Changed and dropped my tank of water and left with the lads. Today beat them in their games to what the man brought for us; they weren’t happy, but got me a small of peanut butter, whole wheat bread and a little box of cornflakes. The lads weren’t happy as me and the other two got enough and they didn’t take all as they used to do. Did asked him the fate of the two missing Dutch students, from the expression on face and his answer; it doesn’t look good, but then, won’t cease praying for them and that they are found alive, held captive somewhere. He knows panama and latin america very well, so he seems to be a bit negative about them being found alive. May God help those poor innocent girls. 

 

Eventually, when we got in from the visit, the lads took theirs to the market place, aka hawking the few things they had today to those willing to pay cash. They fight for those stuffs to sell them off and feed their insatiable habits. #PrisonLife! 

 

It’s 22:24:40….gotta get in, tomorrow is school! 

23:28:34 back in my cell, my High BP porn-addicted cellmate is busy having more and new porn clips bluetooth to his phone, he just love collecting them. Hope his old fragile heart can handle what he’s dealing with. 

 

Played some #CandyCrushSaga before giving in to nature ZzzzzzzzzZzzzzzz! 

 

 

Wednesday, 7 Mei 2014 

Despite gulping a large cup of water, slept through and woke up around 5:30am. My day has just began, might not be working out today if the school roll call comes, as I will up in the school till noon and the gym closes at 1pm. Thus, forced day of rest. Had enough workout yesterday, which should keep me burning all day today. 

 

Went through my morning rituals with ease and in silence as others are still sleeping. One the groceries lads gave me a ginger/lemon/honey tea, dropped it with a bag of green tea, what a wicked combo; the ginger makes it spicy and a hint of honey. Drinking at our signal spot, first to got up here, but signal is very bad. Schat briefly chatted with me, but had to drive as she is picking my birthday girl from nursery. She sent some pictures, but can’t download them. Maybe later on in the morning, signal will be much better. Have to place a call later today and speak with my birthday girl. She will be over the moon to hear from me and she will be full of questions; importantly, ‘Daddy when are you coming home’, that’s one question I always try to avoid. My son once, said, ‘it takes forever for you to return’. Some day they will know the truth, for now, they are kids, it’s better not to spoil their show. But they will grow and want to know in detail, something my eldest daughter is trying to figure out. 

 

Should have marked my girl’s birthday today, by popping open the remaining gallons of my wine, but I’m stint to my skin, as I would’ve to cook for the lads. Well, will keep it to myself as I have done with some many things that has happened during my time here. Somethings are better kept to oneself than shared with those you assumed are friends. It helps with prison survival, secrets well kept is safe!

 

06:41:26, the rest of the pavilion are gradually rising to the new day, some with hot coffee, sticks of fags or joints in the hands as they made their way to the back of the cells where they can freely smoke. 

 

08:32:40,  the rest of the pavilion are joining the early birds, the gym is in full swings as I can hear clanking sound of metals on metals. Waiting for today’s school roll call. 

 

12:19:59, in from school, drizzling outside, but we need more of it as our water crisis continues. School was fine today, though had a copy of the #TheAccidentalBillionaires #TheFoundingOfFacebook with me, which is a good read when the class becomes less interesting. Was actively involved in today’s activies, pity, how I, a non-spanish speaker doing most of the work for the native speakers. The young loacal lads asked me to help out with some of their homework which they failed to do within the two weeks before today’s class. One of the lads pressed me to get the pin of the English teacher, knowing fully well, we entered into a contract with the school authority that any behaviour outside school norm will result in expulsion. Told him off, as there are many on the queue waiting to get into school. Once chucked out, one is gone missing out of a reduced sentence. 

 

Need a new flip flops, as mine is wornout, soaking all the rain water from the puddles along the short distance from the school to our pavilion. Hope my consul will get me two pairs and quality ones. 

 

Glad the rice cooked rice, and today’s wasn’t half-cooked like those of other days. But well cooked, wanted to eat mine with peanut butter, but one of the lads offered to buy me a can of sardine; added my spiced-olive oil and that was my lunch. 

 

The gym was still open when I got in, but bit scanty, seems the water crisis is still keeping people off the gym. 

 

Signal is not at its best, but wouldn’t stop the lads from waiting patiently with hope it will be better. Spent the rest of the evening on the spot, until it was bit ok to send off some tweets and also update my news apps. Some lads were drinking, who knows what they were celebrating, well, one doesn’t need a reason to drink, moods and anything can drive one into drinking. 

 

Hope my little girl had a splendid birthday today, couldn’t speak with her as signal wasn’t good enough to connect calls; and when it was better, it was too late back in Europe. But, schat did sent some beautiful pictures of her, missing her loads. Still praying to be home soon! 

 

Thursday,  8 Mei 2014 

Woke up around 6am to find my sneaking-just-out-of-the-closet cellmate setting things up to clean the toilet and bathroom; bit too early, and it wasn’t his turn. He was paid by our pharmacist-cellmate to do the job. Had to wait for him to finish, but then the heavy downpour began, got down to help him as we filled up every container with cold rain water. 

We got enough for two days use, hope it will continue as we need water. But then, we might miss out on patio as the door is always under locked during rainfall.  

 

Finally round up and went upstairs to our signal spot, others were up and busy with water, taking good advantage of the free rainwater, many took an early morning shower; that must’ve been friggin freezing.  

 

Finally the cops came around for our weekly headcount, when I finally made my way downstairs, the lads were gone and the cell locked. Had to improvised a stash point for my phone as I can’t take it out. 

 

Outside, did some inverse rows and dips on the monkey bars behind the pavilion. Once the headcount was over, ran in to pick up my phone. Had a banana + a spoonful of peanut butter for breakfast before hitting the gym for #HIIT #Hardcore #Crossfit all-body workouts. Few of my training partners later joined me, when the local who trains with me came, he wasn’t allowed in, had to talk to the cop on duty and our vice president to allo him in. He was finally allowed in, once in, he went to change, and joined me in the gym. I set out a program for him; all we had done earlier.  He went through all with ease. Since the lad started training with my groups, he has seen gains and experienced lot of changes; growing stronger, learned proper form and understands his body, unlike most of the lads here who aren’t ready to learn. 

 

Seems today will be my last workout for the week as my lower back still hurts. Definitely need to get some proper rest; our concrete bed is gradually causing all the ills to our body. 

 

Some of the lads are having an early weekend, there’s always a reason to celebrate or rather to drink and be happy. 

 

From intels within and amongst us, many are jumping on the pearl-in-mojo frenzy, friggin wondering when they will get to try their new toy? Just can’t understand why the haste to procure something that you won’t be using in a long while; but then, who knows what goes on under the cover of darkness when we all pretend to sleep. 

 

Decided to hit my bed earlier as I planned waking early to get online. Boiled water for my hot water bottle, which I used for my lower back; relieving! 

 

Friday, 9 Mei 2014 

Woke up earlier than usual, up around 4am, use the loo and made me a cuppa green/ginger tea, which I took upstairs to the signal spot. It’s baby season for the cats, one has four kittens behind the cells and another got four kittens upstairs, hope the lads don’t throw them out now as it’s cold and wet outside. 

 

Upstairs, was alone until the rest of the pavilion began their waking up for the day and weekend. Signal was so poor, had to go back to my cell and hit my bed for another 3hrs of quality sleep. Finally got up around 10am and had a breakfast of oatmeal. 

 

Two of my training partners came looking for me, told them, I’m off today and my weekend begins today. They took what they need from my workout gear box and left. Hope they were able to make a program for themselves. 

 

Since I wasn’t in the gym, decided to stay out of that area; one reason, to avoid sarcasm and the other, I’ve got better things to keep me busy and occupy. 

 

Spent part of the day, upstairs at my mate’s place and searching for signal,  and away from the heat in my cell. My mates are working everyday to round up with all the mashes before the next search; thus, the distilling adds to the heat in the cell. 

 

Around 7pm, about six inmates were hauled in to joined us in our uncertainties; in a journey that has beginning but the end is uncertain. Most were Los Mexicanos, thus, they had a good reception. We didn’t hear them come in as it was late and there wasn’t any heckling and catcalls or warm welcome embrace from our resident queen; our own shemale, it’s been a tradition to send out to the newbies for a proper welcome with a warm embrace and a reminder of where they just found themselves. In the past, some had broke down in tears as they feared for their lives and of what will be done to their manly behinds ;-) , that’s just the fun part of having our queen with us, the faces of the newbies are always fun to watch, bewildered expressions on their faces upon seeing our queen and the moves she makes on them. 

 

These new Mexicans are in good hands, as their compatriots provided them with phones to make calls and chat with their families back home, prepared warm meals for them and took them through the night with live music; all night they were drinking and drinking till daybreak. What more can one make expect, doubt if the lads thought of prison like what they experienced on their first night slammed up; new hammocks made for them, warm meal, drinks that never stop flowing and live rancheras music with a guitarist. Bet prisoners elsewhere will turn green if they hear of how we receive new inmates; proper royal reception. Elsewhere, and probably among the locals, on one’s face day, you are either fleeced off your meagre belongings or you’re ganged rape and made a shagging object, which might continue till the day you decide to end it or they decide to end you, so as to kill the truth of what goes on behind the walls of prisons. 

 

Saturday, 10 Mei 2014 

Woke up checking if I’m in one piece, in pains on every turn I tried making throughout the night. Used extra paddings to get a good sleep. Went to what has become my daily rituals; popped in my blood pressure pill (direutic), the other; Amlodipine is finished, thus, gotta do with just the direutic, pot of water for tea, used the loo and brushed my teeth. Armed with my phone and a novel to keep me busy as it will be a long morning; general cleaning in my cell, involves taking out everything and washing the whole floor of the cell. 

 

Signal was good enough to initiate chat with schat and sent some of my saved tweets, and also updated my news apps. Was later called to remove my stuffs cleaning was about to begin. Downstairs, got my stuffs out as the lad worked alone, he’s not in the good books with the other lads in the cell, fallen out with his partner after blames on who should take responsibility for their case. Good a thing, he sleeps in his little shack upstairs above our cell, sort keep him at an arm’s length from the rest of us. 

 

Prison is such a place, where one is forced to live with people he will easily slit their throats at any slightest bit of opportunity ;-), but then, like a bitter pill, you shut your senses and swallow it. And that’s how we survive the odds of life on the inside. 

 

Stayed up till the cleaning was done, then went for my breakfast of oatmeal and dried prunes given to me yesterday by a mate who wouldn’t know what to do with them. Who knows where they got them from, there seems to be loads of them in the pavilion, some are trying to flock a pack for $3.50, since many don’t know what it is, they are scare of buying. 

 

Adding one and one together, we are beginning to think where they might have come from. A senator who was in charge of the government’s cheap food programe in a municipal (chepo) in close proximity to the prison, lost his seat to an opposition candidate; the gutted senator decided to dump all the food products, so that nobody in his former constituency will benefit from the cheap priced foods. What a wicked man he is, on television we have been seeing re-runs of same and new clips of people scavenging the landfills for foods that he threw away; canned foods, rice, dairy products, cereals, legumes, vegetables and even meats and fishes. What a friggin wanker he is! Who knows maybe the prunes were picked from the landfill and hauled into the centre for inmates to buy.  Wherever they come from, it was nice with my oatmeal and nutritious ;-) 

 

Another hot intel that got in yesterday, sweeping amongst us; the president elect has sent cleaning materials to the prisons for all inmates, but it seems the cops has diverted them, to sell and profit from what was meant for us. That’s the bustling and hustling within our world. We try to out-hustled each other, even the cops aren’t left out in this war of survival of the meanest! 

 

The door was thrown open for patio, enough water today as the lad gave us enough. Thus, many were out for baseball or softball as they called it here and others used the smaller court for four aside football. Used the time to washed my clothes, don’t like having dirty clothes around, the cell was a bit empty until one of the lads came in to set up his distilling equipment. Another batch coming off before any surprise visit from the cops.

 

A walk through the crowded passage is always a tedious work, bumping into inmates standing, seated, or gambling inmates who has set up their green table to burn away time the only way that makes them happy, but then, too stiff to move their bodies. At every time I’m walking, I’m always signalling my slogan, which many have come to know ‘ Agua Caliente’ (Hot Water), that alone sends them off my path. It can be friggin annoying when someone forgets himself and lost in whatever he’s doing, and knowing very well where he is. The worst ones are those with phones, head deep into whatever they are doing, a slight touch can easily knock the phone down, then comes the blaming! 

 

Made my way upstairs as the cell was becoming crowded. Signal is so bad! 

 

12:58:36, started raining, the season has finally come. Good for us but bad for those in many parts of the country as poor drainage system will get them flooded. There will be enough water in the pavilion for everyone. 

 

Took a power nap and felt revived, the rain is helping with the weather as the heat in the cell is giving way to cooler recycled air, since we re virtually shut off without much ventilation. 

 

20:51:55 it’s weekend proper, and music from different corners of the pavilion as the lads gets in the weekend groove. Meanwhile, the gamblers ain’t left out in the weekend bash, dices rolling and cards are shuffled while loses and winnings are counted. Others are preoccupied with food and eating their time away. The tubes adictos ain’t left out, while some of us are doing our times by being busy, there are those who will seat through their time in front of their televisions, from novelas (soaps), rented films; mostly porn and current movies. It’s another weekend before our fortnightly visit, when fresh foods and whatever can be smuggled in from the outside will find their way into our midst. 

 

Lunch/dinner was the hard boiled eggs that came on the breakfast cart with lentils that came for lunch. Though chunks of meatlike stuffs came with lunch, had the lads eat mine while I made do with 5 boiled eggs. Wasn’t bad, added some spice as the lentils was bland and tasteless. 

 

I’m wondering what the newbies will think of their new home, walking around and seeing the mix feelings of the pavilion; some are celebrating, while others are curled up lost in their wandering thoughts, which comes when bad and terrible news come from the outside. I have seen pictures of friends of inmates shot and wasted, funerals held for friends, and some hanging on to life. So much for our fragile hearts. 

 

All through the night, the lads upstairs were loud with their music and drunken noises. It’s always same group, bad for most who were trying to get their nightly sleep, but good business for my distilling-cellmates, as they almost sold out. As of 2am, orders were still coming in. 

 

Sunday, 11 Mei 2014 

Up around 6:30am, and the music was still on where the party at. Crazy thing or a fact that I have learned about the latinos; once they start drinking, they do it for days until the tap is dried, then they call it quit. With the noises accompanied their binged-drinking sessions comes our fear of cops storming on us. Thus, we are on full alert, our sentinels are out and sentries are watchful for any suspicious movement. Hope they don’t come, but then, we can’t do nothing if they decide to come. 

 

Up and the rest of the lads joined me one after the other, went through my daily rituals and took my tea with me upstairs, where signal was on and off. There were others in my spot as I came a bit late today, but the old lad gave me my spot as another told him, that’s my spot ;-)  

 

Schat has been experiencing with baking, all the birthdays, she has been the one baking the cake; thus, saving loads of money and the kids are just so happy to be part of the baking experience. She sent pictures of her beautiful sweet-tempting creations, which will be used in church today for my little girl’s fourth birthday. Can’t for that moment I will lift her and feel her breathe, she is now asking; ‘when is daddy coming home’, little does she know that daddy was once a naughty daddy ;-) 

Whenever I have her phone, then, I realised how time flies, how she has grown so fast and learning so much as she grows. So much happens if only there’s time, even in prison; with time everything is possible. 

 

But this time around in the pavilion is fiestas; #Mothersday is just another friggin time to get soaked and act stupidly, which is what some of the lads has been doing since yesterday’s night. The signal spot is congested as many are trying to place calls to their mothers, wives, baby mothers and their many sidekicks. Well, with nothing to do, today is just an extension or rather a better reason to do what they do most and all the time; calling! 

 

Hope las fiestas won’t turn sour when they’ve got too little too much of our lethal liquors and lines after lines of angels dust or much puffing from jumbo sized joints. For the time being, there’s peace, only music and men having drunken arguments over lousy talks. Well, it’s the substances in them that’s working. By tomorrow, those going out for the less than an hour visit will be sober enough to clean up and walk out. Some will continue with what they are doing now, others will be sleeping out their hangovers; which always come with its demons. I have seen inmate during their hangovers thought they were actually dying, but they lived through and still went back to what put them in that state over and over again. 

 

19:57:05 the heat is on in the pavilion, some had just had too much of our brew, can see it from their dance steps which is being controlled by the quantities of liquor in their systems ;-) 

What more should one expect from men who has nothing to live for, products of the system. 

 

Heard that an inmate who was released and deported back to Colombia is back again in panama and is on the streets; this was his second time in the Joint, probably he’s walking and working to make his third coming. #RepeatedOffender! 

 

21:18:16 Just sold a litre of my wine for $10 to a Bulgarian old lad who appreciate good wine; prison wine of course ;-) he complimented me, that it taste like his father’s wine back home. The old lad doesn’t drink like most here, but after someone told him about my wine, he came looking for me. 

The music is going low now as most of the revellers are either tired or getting weary of doing the same thing over and over again. Now I know why some prisoners really go berserk and crossed the line; life behind bars can be very monotonous, annoying and depressing. Some can’t handle it and don’t know what to do to break the monotonousy of prison life. Once you discover hot to do time, prison won’t do you, you will end up doing time and coming out stronger and fierce. 

 

The lads opposite me, has got an acapellalike music on; everyone in their drunken state seems to be singing along like a gospel choir high in the spirit, but these ones high in a different type of spirit, our distilled spirits, lethal and potent. They are actually singing very nice; #Vallenato. Seems alcohol brings out the potentialities in them, then they should be doing more of it. #JustSaying 

 

Should be hitting my bunk as I will be waking up to hit this signal spot again, gotta get this publish in the morning. And can’t wait to get back to my workouts, still in pains, but will be keeping my workouts to the basic and less strain on my back. Will combine some sets of pull-ups and benchpress and more of bodyweight exercises and lots of stretching to improve my mobility. 

 

It’s been a beautiful week and a weekend rich in our diversities of culture and madness. One thing about us and doing time; we all have our ways of doing time and surviving each day as it comes with its many oddities. 

 

One of such ways is the new trend to achieve the ultimate sexual experience amongst us. Since it started, many are gradually jumping on the bandwagon, the young and able, the old and feeble, and even those who had never had proper sex before in their entire lives ;-), meanwhile, my cellmate who really wants to grow his mojo reminds me daily to get something from Europe to help him get his lil weiner an extra size; too bad we don’t have communal shower like most prisons, then he would’ve seen that he’s not alone ;-) 

 

Anyway, have taken this to Monday morning: Monday12 mei 2014 and 07:14:41! Till date, no news of the two missing Dutch students who disappeared on the first of April. Still praying that they are found alive and in good health. But then this is Panama, and this is Latin America where life means nothing; people are killed at any slightest upset. Life like every other thing has no value in a culture embedded in violence #LaViolencia of Colombia, #DrugWar of Mexico, #GangsWar of El Salvador and the list justy go on and on! It’s a cowboy country! 

 

Prison; supposedly a place where order and rules mattered, work hard to earn one’s redemption. But from my experience, everything about prison is contrary to what it was meant to be; chaotic, breeding and grooming ground for the novice to become what they set out to be, a hub of networks for gangs and leaders in the underworld, truces are made and alliances forged for a better end, to serve their purposes. A place, where men bulk up from leading and living a sedentary lifestyle, eat, sleep and do same all over again. A place where ‘Doing Time’ is actually ‘Time Out’ for studies, learn from mistakes that got one in this sh!t in the first place, reinforcement, networking and forge new alliances and sometimes set record and old scores straight, even right from the inside, where many thing they are invisible and invincible! Not bad for a life thought to have been condemned. 

Panama: The Election, The Surprises And Our Stories And Lives Behind Bars.

Posted in Behind Bars in Panama on May 5, 2014 by doingtimeabroad

Life After Easter And The Evils That Lies Behind The Facades Of Panama’s Beauty!

Posted in Behind Bars in Panama on April 27, 2014 by doingtimeabroad

Panama; Tourist And Banking Haven.

 

Monday, 21 April 2014

Finally the holidays is over here in panamá and but for us on the other side of the world, we are on a forced holidays, but the forced break from our daily clanking of irons and weights and other activities in the gym, shows that certain activities outside could also affects us; glad we’re back to what’s normal. Our lives begins and goes on. 

 

The other side of this tourist and banking haven; Panama! 

Meanwhile, no day goes by without the mention of the two dutch missing students. They have been missing since 1st of April, and as the days goes, hope of finding them alive diminishes. A compatriot of mine who is also following the news, told me, there was a British tourist who went missing and never been found around the same spot the two dutch student went missing. 

 

The dutch government has sent expert police to work hand in hand with Panamanian lousy cops; hope they local cops here will be transparent in their dealings with the dutch; every unturned stones turned and cctv videos viewed, every details checked! Still praying, they are found alive! 

 

Now, back to our lives and our journey; The short bouts of diarrhoea that started yesterday ended early this morning around 3:30am. Back to bed and slept very well and deep. Up by 7:30am, warmed up yesterday’s coffee a mate made last night and took it upstairs to our signal spot. Bit empty upstairs, guess the lads are sleeping out. Signal wasn’t at its best, but enough to chat and shoot some tweets. Bank holiday in Europe, schat at home with the kids, bit handful for her, but hanging on strong as she as always been. 

 

Left to get ready for my daily bouts of exercises, my last day in the gym was last week’s Wednesday; quite a long time off, needed it to recuperate from my sore back and sciatica pain. Feeling better, but not planning to go heavy. 

 

Made enough oatmeal with cinnamon and fresh ginger for the cell. Couple of spoons and left for my workouts. The gym was packed and full, the last day the gym was open, was on Thursday, guess many just want to cover up for the missed days. 

 

Got couple of light weights, began with yoga stretches and light warm ups; push-ups, and body weight lunges, squats and pull-ups. These was something my body really needed to wake up from the long hiatus it been since last week Wednesday.

My training partners joined me gradually, put them through all I have been doing; All-body #HIIT workouts. A local whose got permit to move around has been training with me since last week, later joined us, put him through some exercises and power-clean lift; quick to learn. Rounded up my workouts with abs exercises; wood chopper, hanging leg raise and cable crunches. Enough for the day. 

 

Back in, enough water for the day, all tanks filled. And the rain is coming, drizzled a bit today. Hope it will be like this everyday. Rushed the leftover of my oatmeal, showered and did my laundry. Had proper shower. 

 

Doors was opened for patio around 4pm, my cell was empty as the lads all went out except the grocer who stayed behind to keep an eye on his wares. Tried napping, was too tired to sleep! Went upstairs which was cooler than my grilling cell. 

 

Had the chance to chat with my little girl, how I miss her, we had a daddy and daughter talk; she is growing rapidly and learning quite a lot and learning good things. Can’t wait to be back home! Like kids her age, she is learning quite a lot with computers and up to date with tech trends and to the surprise of schat ;-) 

 

Had to let her sleep as she will be back to school tomorrow.  

 

Seems the rain is coming, the few minutes drizzles earlier today and the cooler breeze all evening is a signal that the weather is changing; something we earnestly need as our water is not what we can bank on. With the rains, comes cooler cells, but then, there’s a price to pay; patio will be a thing we only get to use when there’s no rain. Not too keen about it, as in most cases, it’s opened after my training and after I have showered; meaning, I can’t get to do any outdoors activities, except sunbathing.  

 

Spent all evening upstairs, signal wasn’t constant, but enough to check one or two things. 

 

Stayed up a bit late; reading news articles and later playing #CandyCrushSaga ;-) 

 

When I finally got down, I was the #LastManStanding, others in the cell were in cloud 9! A cup of water and popped in aspirin before retiring to my bed, continue with reading until nature called. 

 

Tuesday 22 Apr. 2014 

Another early day for me, woke up about 5:25am, decided to stay up, set a pot of water for an early brew of green/hibiscus tea, which I took upstairs with me; an early morning has become a ritual for me, kickstarts me for the day, sometimes I go for ol Joe, but prefer tea. 

 

Good signal as there weren’t much phones or routers running at that time. Did what I had to do before sun rise and before the pavilion rises to another day of wranglings, hustling and bustling; perfect timing! 

 

Made it to the gym, which was packed for a while, but later a bit free as the most early gym rats left. Though more came in, but then, I was deep into my chest and triceps workouts. My training partners came in, one after the other; some were busy fetching water which was running in some cells. 

 

Splendid workout, and then in for a bowl of museli + banana + cinnamon, filling and what I really needed then, as I was starving. Showered and cleaned. The lads cooked rice (stable food here) and ox lungs; mine was left on my bed. 

 

Went upstairs as it was too hot downstairs, breezy and windy; not bad, signs of oncoming rain season. 

 

My pharmacist-cellmate who went out for his fortnightly conjugal visit with his missus came back with more rice and stewed beef; about going bad, he tried salvaging it by warming. Later had a bit and that was it for my day, in the evening had the last of my yesterday’s chilli soup. 

 

Four new inmates were hauled in, amongst them, one that was kicked out from pavilion 8 after getting into fight with other inmates; heard the lad is in for homicide. The system here is something else, someone fights in our pavilion, he’s thrown to pavilion 8, another fights there, he’s sent here; what difference does it make? They still gonna get back to being who they are.  What the system does is recycle us among the pavilions until one finally lands with the local which is unbearable. 

 

Tuesday, 23 Apr. 2014

Another early day for me, up to my spot to catch the first wave of signal which wasn’t bad, started a new download; #TinieTempah #Demonstration, hope enough signal to download all files, might take days. 

 

Prepared enough oatmeal (oats + cornmeal + raisins + cinnamon) for the cell, but at the end of the day had to dump it in the bin as the lads didn’t eat them, made them understand that will be my last mass production, especially breakfast. I can cook hot meals and share but breakfast, not anymore. If I had walked around the pavilion screaming and inviting people to come have breakfast with me, I know many would’ve turned up. Well, it’s lesson learned. 

 

Gym was crowded, but was able to do my workout, swift and done with in no time; Chest and loads of crossfit workouts targeting whole body, rounded up with abs. 

 

Still hot and humid in the cells, though upstairs is a bit breezy, hope the rains come soon. The lad didn’t give us water all day, but we have enough to take us through the day and I have my reserves, full and waiting. 

 

These days, barely knows what comes on the food cart, though my mates collect whatever comes and only those that are edible; not everything on those carts are edible, some will send one to the toilet right after eating. 

 

Seems the pavilion is seeing its gambling season now, the lads are up, rolling, shuffling, while money exchange hands, and smokes from fags fills the air. These ones are ready to spend all night on the green table and sleep during the day. They always keep things on the low, no noise, even when there’s heated verbal brawl, what I hear are men grumbling in deep and angry voice; they tend to abide with our zero-tolerance rule. 

 

While some of do all that needs to be done during daylight, there are other inmates who are nocturnal like our feline friends. The night is their day, our shemale is one of those who will herbinate all day and dress up for the night. Who knows what she does ;-) 

 

Wednesday, 24 Apr. 2014 

Supposed to be school day, up and to my signal spot; signal was good. My download is going slow but steady; 21% so far! Might not like all the tracks in the cd, but there are few hits I have seen on the music channel and would love to have them in my workout playlist. 

 

Spent time with schat on chat, and later left to prepared for today’s training. Dressed up and armed with my kits box, then comes our PA system to life, with names of those going up to school. Finally came my name, ruining my day’s workout. 

 

Changed into our conspicuous yelling yellow T-shirt, and off to school. We were kept at first check while the cops sort out some locals; finally let us through. Local inmates and foreign inmates are not mixed, thus, extra care is taking when moving inmates around the centre. 

 

Was able to buy a picnic park of Heinz product (2x ketchup, Mustard, and Relish) and all for $18, inside he pavilion, each bottle will go for $10, friggin reaping and ripping us. Also got 2x bottle of lemon juice ($3.50 each), which sells at $8 inside our pavilion. If the lads doing that business finds out that I buy things on my way to school, they won’t be happy as I’m cutting them off ;-) 

But then, who gives a fcuk….. we’re all bustling and hustling, one thing I have found out here in the course of my incarceration; there’s no friends or whatsoever here. one of our grocers is a good pal, used to be my original training partner and I shared all my supplements with him. Since he took up the job of buying stuffs for us from upstairs, he’s friggin ripping us open. After I bought the permasan cheese for 16 bucks, asked him how much he can get it for me; said 20 bucks, making friggin 4 bucks from me! That’s friendship in prison! 

 

Anyway, glad I found a way of getting my things. 

 

In school, seems to be doing great, spanish and in other fields, but damn too basic and friggin nationalistic; been taught everything about panamá even to the meaning of their national anthem. I’m there for my time reduction, hope it comes good. 

 

One of the locals from pav5 proposed a deal for me, asked if I want a piece; treintaocho /38…..apparently, that’s a piece! said, they’ve got loads of guns in their pavilion, if I need one he could get me for a grand! Have heard there are some in ours, but since nobody has use it, we wouldn’t know. Pray it doesn’t come to them using it. Our truces and peace remains and keeps us in-check. 

 

Back from school with my bags of groceries, mouths were asking where I got them and what I paid, friggin won’t tell them as they never talk. 

 

Not feeling fine, stomach upset and less sleep; down a sachet of Andrews salt, showered and hit my pillows. Few hours later, was feeling superb! Sometimes sleep is the best medicine! 

 

The heat and humidity in the cell drove me out, upstairs bit better, as always, breeze from the mountain keeps it cool.

 

Planning to wake up early, thus, an early night! Some reading before crashing for the night. 

 

Thursday  24 Apr. 2014 

Up around 4:30am to use the loo, then came the much-awaited rain, filled 4 tanks, but the first run was very dirty as the water cleaned up the pipes and the roof of the pavilion. Left for my signal spot, signal was perfect, continued with my downloads; which was done before the headcount, 95% when the whistle went off, but stayed and completed it. Ran down and stashed my phones, dressed up and bounced outside. 

 

The field was still wet from the early morning rain, but good enough to do some brisk-walking, lunges, push-ups and lots of stretching, before hitting the bars for dips and inverse rows. Good warm up that loosened my static muscles before hitting the weight room. 

 

Workout was swift, but intensive; all-body #HIIT #Crossfit circuit. Done and out before the local who trains with me came. When he finally got in, set up a programme for him before going in. 

 

Back in, enough water; yesterday we didn’t have water, and we went down to one tank as of this morning. But water came while I was in the gym and the lads filled up every empty container. Rushed a bowl of muesli + walnuts + peanut butter + gatorade and hit the shower. 

 

Tried napping, but had to round up what I was cooking; ox foot, made soup with it which we ate with white rice. Better than what comes on the prison food cart. 

 

20:39:03 upstairs all evening; stench of our drainage, seems our sewage system is blocked; behind the cells is flooded with sewage water. If nothing is done asap! Will be terrible as it will affect the toilets and bathrooms. Hope we get it unblocked. 

 

Bit quiet, probably the stench had driven them to their holes, and signal isn’t at its best. Maybe I should retire to my hole also for the night. 

 

Downstairs, 3 of the lads had bought fried chicken, made sauce and boiled rice for a late night dinner; passed! Took another shower, the cell is so hot, that even water in tanks are friggin too warm. After shower, took a walk to the back of the cells, but the stench of our sewage was oozing strongly. Back and to be bed. 

 

Friday, 25 Apr. 2014 

It’s another #weekend! Woke up late, around 7am, been up around 4am, but to use the loo and back to sleep. Opt for coffee today, brew a fresh and strong one, should be buying a pack for myself. Drank it with leftover bread from yesterday’s breakfast, our bread eater forgot it. Peanut butter on it was all I needed. Took the coffee upstairs with me. 

 

Upstairs by the signal spot, deserted, and signal is slow. Wanted to take today off training, but can’t! Will hit the gym and take Saturday and Sunday off! 

 

Downstairs, got dressed for workout, the gym was packed, but made out something for myself, got into #workoutmode #HIIT #Hardcore Chest and abs. Done right on time when the catholic priest walked in for his weekly mass with inmates; he hasn’t been here in the past three Fridays, thus, some gym rats fell for it. Too bad, had a good workout and will hang up my towel for weekend and recuperate for Monday, which will be less packed, as it’s our fortnightly visit and many will be out for the visit. 

 

Back in, no water, though drizzling outside, what we got from the rain water is still like the first run of yesterday, still dirty, cleaning up the pipes and the roof. Once the rain starts properly, we will be having clean water. 

 

Used the rainwater for my laundries and mixed it for my shower; colder than our tap water which is warm because of our hot cell. 

 

Had a bowl of museli; now my postworkout meal, need protein powder , should try and get a container. 

 

Upstairs, signal look frustrating, but cooler than our cell. Thus, just sat and enjoy the weather. 

 

Noises from a corner of the pavilion, two well-fed lads decided to take it out on each others; money and weed. Apparently, the two were best of friends before this physical brawl which got many other inmates become Spielberg as they started recording with their phones. That’s what social media and smartphones does to prisoners, keep themselves entertain in whatever way they can. While some wanted to stop the fight, many will rather have them fight till one drop death. They finally got tired, and one came upstairs, the other followed suits, hope they don’t get started as it’s all metals, water pipes and water tanks upstairs. 

 

They won’t like starting round two up here, they better get down to where they came from; much safer. Well, I think they realised that, as they engaged in heated words of name-calling, but no punches thrown. Guess, many were not happy as the fight didn’t continue as they had wanted it to be. 

 

Starving, went downstairs to cook pasta and my home-made pesto. My mate is distilling, but set my pot on the stove and went on with my cooking. Made the pesto; grated permasan cheese, parsley, coriander, spiced-olive oil, fresh garlics and peanuts (mashed into pieces). Was what I needed, filling and nutritious! The lads are probably waiting for our KFC lad to fry some chicken, which they will buy, re-cook and eat with boiled rice like they did yesterday. Apparently, there was no KFC as no chicken crossed the road today from the kitchen to thieving inmates working in the kitchen. So my mates had to do with sardines. 

 

14:35:49 

Water finally came……. all our tanks filled, meaning we will have our saturday’s general cleaning tomorrow.  

 

Had the last of my pasta, and a cup of my red wine, the lad that cooks for my mate upstairs, been drinking and blowing joint all day; not fit for purpose! My mate had to get someone else to do the cooking. Gave me some, but can’t eat anything tonight as I have past my dinner time, will do it for brunch. Feel like doing some Olympic lifts tomorrow morning; once I’m up early, will round up and head out for a quick burst of workout. 

 

21:32:52 

No signal this evening on our network, hope nothing fishy is going on. Will have to hit my bed very early to rise early and get online. 

 

There’s proper rhuma in the pavilion, did distil half a tank of my mash today; added ginger, juniper berries, black pepper and to give the end-product a distinctive taste, wasn’t bad when the lad was done. My mate distilled a full tank and is already selling to his clients who buys on credit. On diverse spots in the pavilion, music, dancing, chatting, smokes and drinks fills the space, space that we barely have. Having read of people who live in close proximity breathing each other’s bacteria, I bet we are breathing and eating eacg other’s shit here. More reason, one have to take care of his health and wellbeing. 

 

Reminds me of inmates who waited all day to be taken to the clinic, finally taken out around 4pm, only to find the staffs closing for the day. Few were attended to, others were told to come back on Saturday; doubt if the cops will come for them. 

 

Intel coming in…… after the fight earlier today, a lad who is a friend to one of the fighters was involved in another case. Last night, while they were drinking and snorting lines upon lines of maryjane, the lad who was thrown out of pavilion 8, nicked a phone from a cellmate who was involved with a now-released compatriot of mine. This pot-bellied fella has been proposing the lad for a shagging session; apparently, he fills like shagging after much drinking and snortin; what a life! Doing time and have the best of times! 

 

Well, the young lad has chosen to pitch his tent with our queen; our shemale, they had their drinking, snorting and frolicking session all night yesterday! Doubt if our shemale knew the lad nicked a Samsung galaxy S3. But as of today when it all came to light, the president suggested that our shemale be thrown out as the lad, but to the disapproval of many beneficiaries of our shemale nightly service. Well, the lad been chucked out, probably to the hyenas; the locals who feast on him, pavilion 8 won’t accept him as he was thrown out from there. Hope he survives the ordeals, probably living with the locals will be what he wanted. 

 

21:54:54! Seems mixtures of joints and liquor is getting the lads past cloud 9, those at the back of the cells are singing along with whatever song comes up on the boom-box and I can hear crude instruments which ain’t coming from the original music; clapping of hard prison palms, empty plastic bottles of gatorade are filled with tiny stones and are shaken along with the rythmn of the music; salsa and vallenato. Fucking don’t know how they will shake that to the tunes of Rick Ross or Guns N Roses ;-) 

 

Did sell 600ml of my wine for $4, not bad…. told my drinking/eating mate not to touch it as I won’t be happy with him. he has finished the pineapple one, him alone. Apparently, the lad wants something to help grow his mojo….got me #lmao! 

 

Told me, he’s got a lil weiner, want something like mandingo…. told him, stop eating and lose some weights; that’s one step to having a good size. Told him, he must have a body proportional to his mojo. Can’t have a little mojo and big frame body and pot bellied. He’s young, but friggin too lazy to pick up weights. He’s doing his time with food; takes a nap, wake up and eat, walk around and back in to eat. His life is around food and food alone. I’m trying to get him to workout with me, but friggin too lazy. His mate bought the 600ml of my wine. 

 

Monday is visit day, last one was a family one, but this will be a normal one. Many are gearing up for the less than an hour moment with their missus or hired skirts #Escort! ;-) 

 

While the rest of us retired to our sleep spaces, some were beginning their weekend rhuma, down in the cell was hot like oven, no option, had to sleep as I needed my sleep. 

 

Saturday, 26 Apr. 2014 

Woke up by 2:30 to use the loo, two of my mates were drinking and in the company of their phone-girlfriends; what more can a man do. Upstairs and on the passages were pockets of inmates gathered together, snorting, drinking and doing their time. 

 

Climbed upstairs to my signal spot, signal was better and also better time to chat with schat who was up and about. The lads kept their music on till 6am, and nobody will talk to them about the noise pollution and disturbance they caused. Some are actually above our unwritten rules.  

 

Been our general cleaning day, rushed down to catch some nap, won’t be training today. 

 

Slept for a while, by 8am, the lads were up, moving things, had to wake up and got my stuffs out and there ended my much-needed sleep. 

 

Went back upstairs with a book to keep me busy, rained a bit, hope it will rain more, as no water today. Had cup of hot chocolate by my mate upstairs, was starving, needed proper food. 

 

Downstairs, the lads were cooking coconut rice, and ox-foot soup. Rushed for a quick shower and made me a brunch of avocado, chopped fresh parsley and added my chilli-oil and a scoop of the steaming coconut rice; filling and nutritious. Downed it all with a chilled cup of my ginger/cinnamon/grape juice wine ;-) 

 

No workout today and Sunday, will head back to the gym on Monday with passion and full force. 

 

Took a power nap, seems the rats has build a city in the gap between my mate’s board upstairs and my cardboard that I used to sealed the top of my bunk. The air from the fan is stench of rat’s urine; should break everything down and put up new ones; will set me back about 50 bucks, need the dough for that asap! Surviving prison is not just about how armed you are, but also involved keeping the ultimate hygiene, eating healthy; we live and breathe billions of bacteria and viruses that any outbreak can be disastrous. 

 

While napping, another round of fight was going on, but very brutal and bloodied, involving one the pavilion’s bully; one of the few with an active gang. Uses his gangs to threaten his debtors, and his boys nicks and he stands behind them. 

 

The pressure is on him, as I heard he was drinking and snorting his own products (seems, to have forgotten rule of business; never get high on your products), in the past, never knew him to drink or smoke, but from what I heard; he has finished doing time for one case, and the prosecutors got him more time for another case. That’s not good business and also not good for his mind; it has driven him mental. He’s becoming more aggressive, and from my intel, he being one of the biggest street pharmacist here is actually in debt as he owing other inmates loads of money; about three grand! Hummmmmmmmm! 

 

He accused a sworn enemies of his of nicking his dope while he was stoned-drunk last night; but witnesses and even his right-hand man, said the accused was sleeping when they were drinking. But, he went in and battered the lad’s face, threatened to stab and kill him. The president met him to calm things down, he insisted the lad must pay him; he’s probably heard the lad has money, so he’s looking for a way to rob him. When the president left, he went back for a second round of fight with the lad. The lad for fear of his life, went out and reported to the police; the cop on duty radioed his boss who came in. And that set our alarm system off; we scrambled to our stashes and buried whatever shouldn’t be found if there’s a search.  

 

When the police came, the big bully was still threatened the lad and in front of the two cops. Upon hearing the threats, the cops armed with tear gas, sprayed him a handful, cuffed him and hauled him out. Many hope that will be the end of his reign of terror in the pavilion, and his leaving will also be the end of his gangs. 

 

We hope, he won’t be brought back, as he seems to be connected with the cops; who are the ones that supply him with his products. 

 

The lad who he battered his face is sleeping away his life and fear; who knows what the remnants of the gang are planning next. One’s life on the edge and on guard 24/7! 

 

Back to what’s normal, drinking and music goes on for those not involve in any fracas, while others are gathered at the signal spot with heads bowed like unto religious worship. 

 

21:49:28 watching live-boxing upstairs with some lads, others are watching baseball. Sports on television are another pastimes that keeps us going. Something has to get us going, or one could drop dead from boredom. Glad I salvaged lots of books from the library when it was destroyed and schat has been helping me by sending books. The best is online resources; been able to download e-books and magazines has been very helpful with doing time. 

 

One of the most important books that has been very useful since I was hauled in here, is #TheBookOfHealth (A medical encyclopedia for everyone).  The day our library was destroyed, I found it in the bin outside, took it and dried it, and since then, it has never left my bedside. Once lend it to a sick Canadian who’s having the early signs of parkison’s syndrome and early signs of Alzheimer’s. He confided in me, that he’s probably will be repatriated after five years due to medical reasons; so happy for him. Was scared he might not make it out of here alive, and he’s well above 65yrs old! 

 

Downstairs to shower and sleep, #Dexter was on tv, didn’t finished the series when it was on, surprised they still show it. And it was the part I wanted to see; where his sister caught him in the church killing Travis! Hope they should the final. 

 

Showered and hit my bed! 

 

Sunday 27 Apr. 2014 and 03:47:22 

Been up since 2AM battling with mosquitoes who don’t know how to quit. The prison was cut of from the national power grid; total blackout, the cell was hot as oven. Had to use a magazine as fan, heard movements on the passages, too risky to walk as many had been drinking and snorting and it’s blindly dark, any crazy thing could happen. Thus, stayed put in my bed till energy was restored. Should be climbing upstairs to get this publish, hope there will be signal. 

 

It’s Sunday, thus, my rest day, there will be lots of hours to sleep and recover; if only there’s no impromptu search later today. We don’t know what the big bully might be doing; hope he’s not singing and ratting us out. When an inmate is forcefully removed, they tend to think the cops are their friends; rat and sings of what is going on inside, another reason we don’t allow people who don’t share same stash with you to know what and where your stash is. The same bully was the one who kicked the Chinese out of the cell he shared with them after they accused him of nicking their ipad during a search, while he stayed behind to monitor the cops (one cell member always stay behind during search to watch the cops, as they themselves are thieves on uniforms; licence to steal). 

 

Despite my fan on its fullest, it’s still friggin hot in here. Better dress up and climb upstairs for fresh air. 

 

Our sewage man and 24/7 snort came asking my pharmacist-cellmate to sell him asthma inhaler; a local sold it to my mate for $5 and my mate wants 10 bucks for it. The lad is probably having one of his asthma attacks and really need the inhaler, but my mate ain’t giving him as the chance of paying is zero! He want cash in hand, but the asthmatic inmate doesn’t have the cash now, promised to pay later in the day; no way, he ain’t gonna pay no dime! 

 

He’s paid handsomely by the pavilion for his cleaning job, and also washes cells for the lazy ones and get paid; but end up using his money on dope, forgetting that he need his real lifesaving medication first. I think the heat that came during the blackout must have triggered his asthmatic attack. 

 

Well, left him at my door to his fate, but locked the door after me. I know my cell mate won’t budge, the lad need money to replace his archaic HTC Inspire that was taken during the search. Doing business in prison, one have to been hard, mean and brutal or else one will end up locked up and broke. Tried it and didn’t go well; especially when it’s perishable goods, you are forced to sell on credit which you might end up not been paid. The same asthmatic lad once bought a pie I baked and sold and till date hasn’t paid. Others had started with fun and fair; elaborate businesses, some with partners, but at the end, either a fallout or ran into debts, which ends up with creditor harassing his debtors, either with sticks or knives. 

 

Business behind bars is at one’s own risk! And that’s why I prefer my moonshine business; my wine gets better with age, but loses comes when there is a search; one can lose all. The scents gives it away, friggin smells like a brewery ;-) no search, the wine and distill can stand forever and gets better. 

 

Flashes of lightening and thundering from the mountains, hope it will rain as we ain’t sure of water today; yesterday there was none and are bare! Though got my reserves! 

 

Gotta get this up, signal is a bit ok! 

 

Whilst you’re holding on to what has passed and who you’ve been. You’re unable to grow into the next moment and what you could become! 

#PrisonExperience #PrisonCurious! #Lockup #Gevangenis #Panama #Netherlands #Nederland #PrisonViolence #SurvivingPrison #Prison #Jail 

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