A story many have heard a million times, a story that idle and layabout inmates will sit for hours in heated argument of what was and what wasn’t. A story with just one theme; #Redemption, a theme befitting us, living behind bars, people in dire need of redemption. Redemption, which sometimes and in most cases comes through self vindication. No where in the world would people find men “trying” to live the easter experience than in prisons and in catholic latin American prisons; #Panamà
Let the past dictate the future, but never repeated. Mistakes are valuable, learn from them and then let them go.
Easier said than done? It all depends on one’s perspective of what mistakes are and what should be done with them or after them. When something goes wrong, turn it into an opportunity to learn something you didn’t know; especially about yourself.
When something goes wrong for someone else, turn it into an opportunity to be gracious, forgiving, and understanding and most importantly, learn from that person’s mistake; table do turn around! Yeah! Like the wheel of fortune!
The past is just training. The past should definitely inform but in no way define you–unless you let it.
And that mistake and past is one experienced in the courtyard of high barbed-wire fences enclosures; called #Prison, and the lessons are horned and learnt through this bitter experience; #PrisonExperience.
Wow! A new week and lots of uncertainties lies ahead of us as we walk and work our lives unto our redemption.
The weekend was a hectic one, taking us through our water crisis, which gradually is coming to an end, as of today many were still fighting for water which when it runs, run for few minutes and not enough for everyone. My cell is lucky to be on a pipeline that gets water whenever it runs. But then we haven’t gotten enough to do all our laundries and do the general cleaning that was supposed to be done on Saturday. Hopefully by Wednesday everything should come back to what we know as normality.
#Monday, our fortnightly visit, but happened to be a family visit day, minors are allowed to accompanied adults on today’s visit. The pavilion was almost empty as those without visit tagged along to see their mates families. The food that came in here today is enough to feed us for three days, but without means of preservation, they will all rot. Many came back from the visit with red eyes from sobbing at the departure of their loved ones, heard the kids were also crying. Such is our lives, our chosen paths; the highway of the underworld.
While they were out smooching and touching, I was busy hitting weights in the gym. The gym was scanty, but ok to get me worked up; had enough time for myself. Had an #HIIT Back and Biceps workout, made it burning with skipping and rounded up with abs moves. The air was thick, the few that were in the gym were complaining of the heat and humidity. My last workout was on Thursday, thus, wasn’t on my full potential. But had what I will call an excruciating workout and rewarding.
Wanted to nap, but with the heat in my cell, it’s not advisable to stay in the cell, after my shower and postworkout meal of coconut water and pineapple and devouring last night’s leftover spaghetti, I felt superb. Couldn’t dine on what the lads brought in, there are so much food from the two lads who went out on visit today in my cell. So much to feast on, but since I watching my height ;-) gotta be careful with all the fried foods.
For dinner, had a few weird tiny eggs, fish, chicken drumstick and a portion of rice (this will go on my twitter timeline: @Doingtimeabroad). Enough calories and nutrients for today, down everything with green tea and fresh ginger. Had gotten two fillets of tilapia which was supposed to be my postworkout meal, will keep it for tomorrow, maybe my breakfast. Doubt if anybody in my cell and most cells touched the prison food that came in today as we have enough food to take us through three days.
Our drainage system got blocked; guess from all that got stocked during our water crisis, the pavilion’s executives went around collecting a dollar from each inmate to pay the lads that will unblock the pipe, if they can’t do it tonight, will be terrible as our toilets and shower rooms will be flooded with black stinking water. Hope it work out good tonight. Dues paid, the sewage system fixed and we all went back to flooding it with our shits and crumbs of food that some dullards and daft inmates will always wash into the bathroom drain.
Signal doesn’t look promising tonight and the spot is crowded with inmates who desperately want to continue where they stopped at the visit earlier today. And downstairs is baking hot, but got loads to do, thus, i’ll be heading downstairs to my cell.
Back in my cell, showered for the second time today, it’s normal to take two showers each day; one after my workout and the 2nd before bedtime or rather bunktime ;)
Stayed up all night on my bed doing backup of all my files; have got over 1500 ebooks, magazines and other useful materials on a 32GB memory card, lots of full albums of current billboard songs and older ones and also some video clips that worth saving as no one knows what can happen the next moment. Most importantly are my daily updates of my life, our lives and our journey on the inside, can’t afford to lose them, though having a blog also keeps them safe. Having multiple backups is an ideal idea in a place like this. Stayed up until 3am doing just the backups and finally get to lay my head. Around 4am a mate that is really sick of multiple illness; high cholesterol, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure took ill, the lad sleeping up on top of our cell attended to him. Well, in a place like this, one guides his life and health even with his own life. Some crazy and bad habits are hard to weaned off; my mate has got sweet tooth, hard to let go of sugary stuffs. Haven’t been a fan of sugar, salt and oils, thus I don’t buy them, tried cooking with spices instead to get the flavours. My mate happens to be the strongest in the pavilion; old school prisoner, did time in the states where he horned his strength, lad benches the most, squat the most and even deadlift the most. Always made him understand, I’m training to live healthy and remain fit; well to run as fast and far as I can if I have to ;)
He loves competition, my competition is with myself, to better than I was yesterday….period!
Glad I have access to materials online; following different training regimes and circuit has really helped me improve my workouts. And apparently, I seems to have many followers or disciples who wants to follow my training routines ;)
Helps when training with enthusiastic partners, they help uplifts and motivates when one is about losing it. There are some good lads here, irrespective of what they are in for, and there are some evil ones, and I mean real evil ;) Well, despite their evil nature, we still coexist and cohabit but our lives are on parallel line, never to meet; once wrote prison as a crossroad; but once we have met, we then continue on our parallel lives till the day we walk out of this dungeon; dead or alive!
Tuesday, 15 Apr. 2014
We had so much assorted food yesterday, that before sleeping, had to drink a cup of Andrews salt; really helped, despite sleeping less than 4hrs, woke up without any stomach upset.
My incarceration in panamá has given me the opportunity to try assorted cuisines and exotic foods which in Europe, I might be facing extra prison time for indulging in such luxury. I have eaten Iguana, crocodile, eggs from exotic birds and iguana eggs, different sorts of bush and wild animals. One thing, I always asked and watch them eat before trying. Well snakes, I haven’t, but some lads had killed boa constrictor and made soup of its meat; couldn’t stomach that…..yuuuuks!
Being a pavilion for foreigners, virtually all nations or race on planet earth and probably alien ones are represented here; Chinese and their stir fries, Mexicans with pikante, white and black Colombians (the most here) with all sorts of exotic dishes, Europeans, North Americans and even Africa, thus, we are the #UNO (UNderworld Organisation)
Surviving prison is about not taking life too serious once you are slammed in. Live each day as it comes but plan for the next day; #Hope! And always be ready for the unknown! Got some training mates who are always on trainers while most of us are on flipflops as it’s friggin hot here, once asked one why the trainers 24/7; being an old school lad with a long sheet of record, he said, this is prison, anything can happen and you have to bail; #RUN! Thus, having running shoes on, mean you are ready when such moment comes.
Back to my day, got up around 6:30am, set up a pot of fresh ginger and cinnamon sticks for our morning brew; added green tea to mine as I headed upstairs to get online. Too late as signal was very bad, but did some time before heading down to get ready for an early start in the gym.
The cop on duty is a mean one, wouldn’t allow anyone outside, not even the boxers; the local boxer who was in for stabbing his girlfriend and a good friend of my mate left yesterday after doing about 4yrs on the inside; since he’s gone, guess the cop wants a new list from the director. Set my name on the paper, hope the director approves it. Will love to be heading outside for early burst of cardio and then round up with strength training with free weights.
No breakfast, just my cup of tea and a banana, hit the gym, planned hitting chest today, but all materials taken; improvised for a proper #Crossfit circuit, started with #skipping, inclined push-ups, and power clean. A mate joined me, couldn’t last as it was proper #HIIT #Hardcore , some weaklings thought I’m on some kind of juice; #Determination and a #MindsetOfAPrisoner to better himself is probably my fuel. Got my worked up. We finally found a bench and bar and did strength lifting; increasing the weight on every next set, benched 295lbs as I was knackered from the cardio. Rounded up with triceps and abdominal. Called it a day and back in.
Devoured my leftover rice and chicken, cool down with a cup of cold tea; thank God for ice that are allowed in, it would have been inferno here with it.
Showered and wash my clothes, water came this morning, but we weren’t given, the lad in charge of the pump is making money from supplying other cells water; but seem to forget that, the pump was bought be my mate and also paid to bring it in. But we later got enough water this afternoon. Tried napping, couldn’t as my mates were too busy enjoying their food and talking; #GoodLife!
Upstairs by our signal spot is congested as inmates congregates around the spot we all seems to be receiving mobile signal; sounds and look crazy, that only one spot in the pavilion can phones receive mobile signal. At least it serves our needs.
Couldn’t keep up the watch and stay all night, felt knackered and sort of disorientated as I couldn’t nap during the day due to my mates incessant noises. Thus, an early call to my bunk, shower and by 10pm tucked my sore back into my bed, popped B complex and Diclofenac to help with the strained lower back.
Wednesday, 16 Apr. 2014
Barely slept throughout the night; had to use pillow to relieve me of the pain.
It’s 11:11:56, been upstairs since 7am at the signal spot, not bad, at least could read some news and fire up my tweets before it slowed down.
Back to my cell for a quick shower and a brunch; we are probably having the last of the visit food; chicken and rice (the lads cooks white rice with so much oil, one can only eat when hot, cold, it’s all fatty).
By 1300hrs, the pavilion will be thrown into silence as Barcelona takes Madrid for the #CopaDeRey championship. Majority are Barça fans, but I’d rather see #FCMadrid lift the cup ;)
True to my prediction, #GarethBale #KingOfWales is crowned #KingOFSpain. Throughout the duration of the match, the pavilion was as quiet as a graveyard, the only moment the silence was broken was when Barcelona put in their equaliser, it was like an eruption of a sleepy volcano their joy wwas short-lived when #KingBale netted in the winning goal that’s worth his £100M sales from Tottenham Spur; what a match and it’s silenced the Barcelona fans forever and for good and the peace of our pavilion; if they had won, their weekend would’ve started today with drinks and music. Glad they didn’t win ;)
18:20:50 up by the signal spot, not much of signal tonight and the spot is congested with inmates, most calling. Can’t imagine what life would’ve been on the inside without access to mobile phones. It’s one technological innovation that is ironically useful to prisoners. Though will use it to continue with deals on the outside, but the pros outweighs the cons.
There will be series of meetings tomorrow, but none for me. And it will be our weekly headcount, thus an early start for the day; like always, should be stashing my phones.
Couldn’t keep my watch as my sore back need a rest. Down to my bunk, showered and straight to my bed before others; surprised!
Thursday, 17 Apr. 2014
Sleeping early last night definitely meant I will be first to rise, though spent most part of my sleep hours tossing from side to side to soothe my aching lower back. Finally gave up the idea of sleep around 4am, got dressed up and crawled my way to the signal spot; climbing is no deal as there ain’t no weight of pressure on my lower back, but standing still, walking, or sitting is much of a big deal. Climbed gracefully and got to my spot, sat alone for much part of the early hours, signal was good, but I was feeling sleepy, guess from the 300mg of painkillers I downed before leaving the cell and also from sleeplessness.
Left the spot back to my cell around 6am to catch an hour or so of sleep before the headcount commences.
Didn’t get much of the sleep I wanted, a crazy mate came pulling my curtains; wanker!
Then came the headcount, was first to walked out with my chair and #LeeChild #WorthDyingFor novel, not working out is given time to read quicker as I’m stuck in my bed, sort of bedridden, there’s no library or anywhere to sit quietly and read or study; had to turn deaf ears to the noise and brawling in my cell even when my name is mentioned in their discussions, I tend to ignore.
The headcount went pretty fast, and all were hauled in. The gym’s early birds were about to hit the weights when protest came from the over-zealots who wanted the day kept holy and undefiled; and most are probably sharpening weapons of warfare, nicking and ordering reprisals all from the inside. Well, they won, as they wanted #JuevesSanto (Holy Thursday) kept holy; thus, the #GymBirds walked back to their cells, some had warmed up outside, well from what I heard, the gym will be closed on #EasterFriday also and probably by open on #Saturday, closed on #Sunday and likely closed on #Monday (#EasterMonday).
Back in my cell and continued with my novel, up for a breakfast of muesli (thanks to Schat for sending me that), back to bed and to my reading, occasionally up to use the loo (taken a direutic earlier in the day for #BP and sends me to the loo every now and then). A cup of green tea on my cluster bed, a nap in-between my reading. Some inmates came asking if I’m good as they haven’t seen me all day; well caring ones. Some will wish, I’m gone for good, just for no reason.
The day is friggin slow without my daily workouts, hope I get well and fixed before Monday.
Had given the lads a pack of tuna bought from one of the prisoners chef, but they decided to cook ox tongue; not bad, filling with enough white rice. Spaghetti and tuna came on the dinner cart, took some and that’s enough for the day. If I’m hungry later on, I can still make me a bowl of muesli…. there was no need for the bowl of cereals, I had a cuppa of hot brew hibiscus/green tea in bed after an evening shower. then curled up in the foetus position as it’s the only way I get relieved of the pains. Did some pages on the novel before nature called. Slept till 1am when I got up and popped in some diclofenac and B Complex, hope they help with the pain. Got my weightlifting belt on as I made my way upstairs to get online.
It’s 02:02:55 been up here for more than an hour, the evangelicals are having vigil behind the cells, while some early weekenders on one corner are revelling; celebrating something only know to them. Feel bit ok with fresh burst of wind blowing from the mountain through the iron bars; that just the only one thing they can’t deny us of #FreshAir!
Left the signal spot to my cell to get some sleep hours, struggled to sleep and when finally got my eyes closed, had two opposing dreams, of which one is what every man will want to indulge in ;) and the other a bit disturbing; but both scenarios were outside, hope freedom comes soon. Fingers crossed as we wait for #DenHaag decision on our long-forgotten fate.
Been reading #CarlJung #ManAndHisSymbol; a gift from a #Canadian journalist, one of the best gift ever had in here and I believe it was also gifted to him. Nice fella! Had initially scanned through the novel, but now reading it like a textbook, so much on the psychology of man, dreams and symbols and life as a whole.
Friday, 18 Apr. 2014 #GoodFriday!
Apart from the religious side to today, if anything is good about this Friday, it will be ‘being alive to see the day’, other than that, ain’t no different from other days and moreover we had another search scare; a false alarm that sets us panicking and running helter-skelter to our stash spots. There were cops marching towards this end, and that sets the lads in synchronised motions; all to task they have repeated over time, running, pulling aparts and climbing, all to hide what is said to be prohibited in prisons.
It all turned out to be a false alarm, but didn’t stop me from doing same; got my phones stashed and sets my tanks of mashes away to a better and spacious spot were the fermenting mashes can breathe. Glad it was a false alarm. Later heard the cops went to our transvestite neighbours in pavilion two. Bet they will be sieving through G-strings, BH’s, tangas and bikinis as those lasses are fun of dressing colourfully when out on patio. They might even find firearms and other mean weapons, since these trans are the aggressive types in their kingdom; ‘don’t mess with my culo’…….. words we always hear from them; lovely lasses, they keep us going.
A bit relieved of my sciatica pain, able to wash my clothes and had a proper shower; water seems to be rationed, we only get what we need for the day’s uses. Hope the lads realise this also and use water wisely.
My mate cooked half of the tuna I bought from one of the cooks, not bad with white rice. Lately we have been a lot of vegetables; courtesy of my grocer cellmate; once he placed orders, whatever comes and on what conditions the vege comes, he has to accept them, sometimes at a loss, vegetables and fruits are supposed to be stored in cool and dark place; but the heat in the cell gets them all ripen within days, he’s forced to pick them out and leave them for the cell to us. I still buy other things from him, but we do have enough bell peppers; mostly green and green turning red. Sometimes onions and plantains are added and cucumers which I use for cucumbers sticks, not bad. Our shemale once gave a show with one massive cucumber, glad it didn’t get close to his behind, just a blow-job show; friggin expert in it, the flow was all natural, smooth and swift;)
14:07:13 lunch just got in, for the first time in years, we are having fried fishes for lunch; majorities of inmates being from Atlantic and pacific parts of Colombia are fish-lovers, they were over the moon. Got mine with a bowl of lentils, passed the rice, bit tired of eating half-cooked rice that ends up getting cooked in my stomach; no wonder one can’t stand or stay in the cell when these lads shit, they eat half-cooked rice and got it cooked and fermented in their system and the end-product is proper shit!
The still-in-the-closet gay lad in my cell is becoming very edgy lately, his compatriots won’t let him be as they seems to always make him centre of their jokes. Since there’s nothing useful or important to do, picking on others is part of what keeps many going and alive here; sarcasm!
Have always learned sarcasm and critics as stepping stones to build my resolve to survive, even in the gym, it helps with the extra lift and the last reps.
21:14:12 Upstairs but signal is terrible, haven’t spoken or chat with schat after our early morning chat. Hope signal will come up so her messages comes through; all my messages seems to be in a buffer zone waiting for signal so they can come through ;)
We actually had fried fishes for lunch today; these folks takes the easter and no meat things literally serious. From my fishermen cellmates, what they brought in on the lunch cart is what they throw back to the sea after drawing out their nets ;)
The fish was plain and tasteless, but we did turned them edible after some touches, and that was my lunch/dinner!
From the kitchen insiders, we might be having steak tomorrow for lunch, not beef steak but pork chops, many are over the moon, can’t wait, I will be using the rest half of my tuna for pasta/tuna/vegetables!
The pavilion is a bit bit quiet, despite our gamblers at different points in the passages rolling dices and shuffling cards as money passes hands. Everything seems to be done quietly not to upset the mood of the season. A cellmate of mine has downed a half litre of liquor alone, hope he doesn’t vomit or become too noisy later tonight. Well, he didn’t vomit, but I guess he got horny and probably wants to get laid, he’s been taking the piss of the little still-in-the-closet gay cellmate; himself when tipped over the recommended limit, ties his shirt in knots and wag his ass in fluid and smooth movements to tunes of vallenato, as he have his gay moments of joy and pain, and as always, it ends in tears after reminiscing of things that belongs and should stay in the past; it all happens to us all, call it #SwingMoods!
When I finally got downstairs, past midnight, my drunk cellmate has made himself and eaten a pot of soup to help with the after-effect of downing so much of our potent distil. Took another late-night shower as it was grilling in the cell; the fans seems to be blowing streams of hot air and dust. Some reading before crashing.
Saturday, 19 Apr. 2014
The gym is likely going to be open today, but still time-out for me as I need to get my sore back in shape. Yoga stretches has been very helpful, hope I’m fully fixed by Monday, so I can get on with me workout as from next week’s Tuesday.
07:59:17; water is running and the lads are hustling and scrambling for what they can fetch, someone just fell through the net-wire passage upstairs, he should take care of himself as the wires are all rusted and risk of infection is very high. An inmate once fell in and got infected after laughing off the scratches, glad almost everything we need medically are handy around here; legal and illegal once can be bought from inmates and from the so-called medic working in the infirmary; nicks and sells!
Starving upstairs, had to head downstairs for what I would call crashed food: #Brunch!
Had ordered chicken’s livers and hearts, who knows what parts nicked from the kitchen were included in the $2 packs; onions, garlic, cumin, and hint of curry, salt to taste, left it to boil with the liver oil. Wasn’t bad for my stomach that has only seen tea and coffee today. Was filling, just as I finished came in black eye peas with pig tails on the lunch cart, told the lad to sieve through and scoop as much beans he can for me, filled my bowl; that will be my dinner.
One of my cellmates is drinking and salsa is blasting from his radio placed in front of the cell.
Meanwhile and earlier today, we had another search scare, couple of cops were making round the perimeters, as it’s become our new norm, they sent us flying, scrambling to our stashes, inmates were climbing and ripping off routers from walls high up in the pavilion, then came the calls that it’s a false alarm. That wouldn’t make me pull out my phone’s where they were stashed; had to give them another thirty minutes and see what happens next, nothing! Coast cleared! Phones out and life goes on as it used to be; waiting and anticipating their next move, like a game of chess.
Had a power nap after my shower and brunch; chilli curried chicken organs (livers and heart), guess missing parts from the kitchen, sold at $2 a pack, had it with rice but cell-cooked not the prison half-cooked rice, not much of difference from what we the lads cook in the cell; first fry part of unwashed rice in hot oil, fried till brown and burnt, then add washed fresh ones and cook till half done, always the last to scoop mine after they are done; cover the pan, and allowed the steam to do some more cooking until the rice is fully cooked.
Our revellers are in full swing tonight having some gay moments; music, chicha (moonshine), distil cocktails, rolled joints, and fags, what more will one expect in a place where men are slammed to withered away; and gradually!
A mate whom I have known since my day one here, told me how he sold his bed in the cell to fund his wife medical treatment; apparently she is in the female prison as they were both arrested, charged and sentenced. The authorities won’t attend to her medical need, the lad had no option than selling his concrete bed and set up a sleep space on top of the cell; actually sleeps with rats, roaches and the cats as we all do. It’s pathetic how the authorities treats inmates.
Beggars belief when one sees what politicians make and turn prisoners into; religion is good, but a fanatic and an extremist are something else. Once read, “an extremist is on who won’t stop talking about it or change the topic”……. watching today’s news, which has become an uncontrolled habit, just to keep tab on the two missing Dutch students who had been missing since 1st of April. pray they are found alive.
Well, on the news today, the journalist ventured into parts of the city, politicians dread talking about; the ghettos of San Miguelito, showing young boys yet to be initiated into streets or barios gangs playing footie, something to keep them off crime like many others who took to boxing. Talking to the journalist is a young lad whom I have seen his face within the centre; now released and written under his young frame on television; #Pastor………! beggars belief! Isn’t! Been to jail, did some time probably a violent crime and probably was in as a minor and now out as a pastor! What does he know? Lad can’t friggin wipe his ass? Soon he will be back in the slammer. The government definitely need to lay something concrete for the locals and get them properly rehabilitated; learn a trade, apprenticeships of any kind, anything vocational will help them. Not bombarding them with religion, soon the after-effect will wear off like drugs and they will fine themselves in the real world of hustling and bustling, then what will they do?
Something cooler here, as the wind is blowing in, but downstairs is grilling, will be here for a while #upstairs.
Never put too much trust in friends; learn how to use enemies.
Conceal your intentions.
Always say less than necessary.
So much depends on reputation. Guard it with your life.
Win through your actions, never through argument.
Infection: avoid the unhappy and unlucky. (we are all unlucky to be here at the first place, but the unhappy; them I run from). Lol!
Learn to keep people dependent on you. (I used that in the gym, as they need me for motivation and selective exercises, but money-wise, friggin need nobody depending on me, but my cellmates definitely need me as I’m their passwords keeper)
Use selective honesty and generosity to disarm your victim.
When asking for help, appeal to people’s self-interests, never to their mercy or gratitude.
Pose as a friend, work as a spy.
Crush your enemy totally (#PrisonGangs does it better, scarred for life or send to the great beyond #PrisonViolence)
Use absence to increase respect and honour. (well, can’t be absent here, but do try staying away from the scene for a while; encamped in my bunk, like now with sore back and sciatica pain, but back home, amongst friends and loved ones, my absence has really made them realised how important I was in their midst and how important families meant to me, especially my lil girl, grown up and longs for my return).
Keep others in suspended terror: cultivate an air of unpredictability (had never been involved in physical brawl, thus, I’m definitely unpredictable; does Olympic lifts many are scare of doing; fast, agile and very prime and always prepared)
Do not build fortresses to protect yourself. Isolation is dangerous.
Know who you’re dealing with; do not offend the wrong person. (surviving prison, one need to know every inmate inside-out!)
Do not commit to anyone. (And owe no man, no even dope, moonshine or joint money, don’t buy on credit)
Laws of Power and Sun Tzu’s #ArtOfWar are great reads that should be available for inmates; got both copies, in print and digital; always going back and forth on both to re-equiped myself. Helps to understand and know your friends, enemies and your environment; once survival depends on those three factors. How to deal with different types of people; pessimistic, optimistic, sadists, fanatics and extremists, unhappy, gay, ungay and gay-wannabees (sexually confused), hidden-in-closet-types, bossy-types, and those weirdos who fancied touching my cats in their fanny (some fellas are just sick)! Well, this is prison and it’s a crossroads for all lives and types.
The whistle finally went off past 11pm, the lads were given an hour of grace to party and enjoy the moment while it last.
Headed down to my cell, took a cold shower, and it was still hot, just a boxer and set my fan to the highest and it was still hot, gave up and switched off every heat sensors in my body, armed with Lee Child’s #WorthDyingFor, dig into few pages before surrending and succumbing to nature’s call.
Sunday, 20 Apr. 2014 #EasterSunday
Having gone to bed fallen asleep on the book I was reading and above me, señor rat was busy doing justice to my permasan cheese and some books, I woke up around 4am, tempted to go upstairs and get online, but too knackered, guess from the painkillers which I had downed 300mg to numb my sore back and moreover my day to clean up our toilet and shower room. Back to bed, half sleeping and half awake. Finally decided to get up around 7am and got my cleaning done.
Showered and had peanut butter sandwich with a cuppa tea. Water came, but the waterman cut us off; lately, he’s been busy upstairs tingling with pipes as he adds more cells to our water line; thus, more recipients. We didn’t get water all morning.
Easter Sunday, very religious atmosphere in the pavilion, the evangelicals were busy in the gym hall, clapping and singing and as soon as they pack off their equipment (they don’t share anything with the catholics). The catholic took over, the faitfuls, some sleepy but tradition forced them out of their beds as they marched to the same spot that was the centre of the most heavenly experience in the pavilion some minutes ago.
Quietly, the catholics went through the same process, but without a priest to confess to; well, most had confessed and accepted a guilty charged for reduced sentences, thus, nothing to confess to for now. Petty stealing in the pavilion is out of the picture; such is seen as survival measures.
Would’ve love to climb upstairs for signal, but glue and buried deep in the novel I was reading; and for the fact that, if I get upstairs, I won’t be able to read, decided to stay put in the cell and in my bed; the only place my privacy is a little guaranteed. Though, wouldn’t stop anyone coming to disturb me, but they won’t stay as I won’t be giving them 100% of my attention.
Finally done with the novel by afternoon and water finally came; the lad came to see what we were up to, but ended giving us about eight tanks, added to what we have, enough for today’s use.
Easter Sunday, Christ has risen and mankind is redeemed; that’s the essence of of the easter experience. But to the lads, it’s time for merriment, las fiestas; boom boxes and radios adapted to work with mobile phones were plugged and it’s showtime; drinks (mainly our prison brew or distil), the smokers helped themselves as they passed rolled-out joint and others coninue with boring histories of their pathetic lives; stories they have told over and over again, of their heroic adventures in the underworld. Some will rather keep their loud conversations to sports and women; some showing photos of their recent catch, but then at the expense of their hard-earned prison money.
No special food today, all easter, the fishes we had on Friday was the only good thing that came from the prison food cart. Didn’t stop those with dough from eating proper and well-cooked meals. For lunch, I had the leftover black eye peas of last night with boiled eggs; hummmmm! Not a good choice as it later knocked me down with diarrhoea :-(
Easter holidays, gambling holidays; at different spots and corners of the pavilion, inmates were busy shuffling cards or rolling dices as money passed hands, the unlucky ones will part ways with their prison hard earned money. But for the kick of it and lack of something to do; they just can’t resist the urge or temptation. Well, whatever each does amounts to paying his dues; doing time!
Had thought I will be out and about when I finally dropped the novel, but didn’t went as planned. Diarrhoea sets in, think from the day old beans that I feasted on; good idea as I need the nutrients and good fibre, but bad on arrival inside. Got me bedridden, when I managed to climb upstairs, it sent me back scrambling to my cell. Finally got to sleep worn-out around 10pm.
Monday, 21 Apr. 2014 #EasterMonday
Up around 3:30am to use the loo, hope the last of the diarrhoea that started yesterday. Remembered I have something to stop it; check my medicine cabinet and two tablets were still intact, far from expiring, quickly popped those two. Wanted to get upstairs, but too weak. Decided to get some sleep.
Finally up around 7:30am, woken by the sound of metals in the gym; glad our lives is going back to what is normal. I will be hitting the gym, but nothing heavy today or for the time being, gotta watch out for my back.
We are gradually going back into our water crisis, tanks are lined up at he back of the cells and in front of cells with pump; whatever comes each day is not enough for everyone. In most cases hot words are exchanged or punches thrown.
I and my compatriots are still waiting for our leaders back in #DenHaag to finally decide of what will become of us. One of the lads said, it will be done this week, and it could be take forever; one thing for sure, prisoners from time before time have always learn to wait, everything within and behind the walls of prisons is done in and with patience, never does one rush!
A new day and a new week begins, for a waiting and patient man slammed up and left with just hope, a new day means so much and is worth dying for in order to survive this day; an opportunity given to prove himself and his worth.
Happy Easter! Hope we will find our redemption as the easter stories tells us!