OUR ANIMAL FRIENDS IN THE JUNGLE, THE LADIES IN THE CENTRE AND MY HAPPIEST MOMENT HERE!!!!

*WEEK 18*

Monday, 3rd of May 2010….

Got Up early from sleep, lately Pepe and whoever has been picking up BF has also been picking up mine and kept it in a different bowl, as Ernesto usually eat my BF if it comes in same bowl. Since it comes in a different bowl, it has stopped him from nicking my BF. Good Idea as my Daughter will say…

Did some workout and had Robbie trimmed my beard, he is busy working on his repat, hope he leaves here soon, as many of the Custodios don´t really like him, they once took his new phone (one that has everything built in, Dual sim cards, TV, radio and wap for internet; thanks to Chinese imitators who are ready to copy anything) and won´t return it even when he offered to pay them. While doing my beard, some of the lads came around, weren´t happy as they wanted to have their hair cut, but told them I only want to have my beard trim. They hung around till he finished with me.

Well living among these guys is like living in an active, but dormant and a sleeping volcano waiting to erupt; unpredictable, one never know or understand their moods, one moment they are smiling with you. Then they heard something and you do something and the mood changes. So most of the foreigners here, are ready to take any shit from them that peace may reign, like one of the small rat who acts as he is all and all in Anexo whom Ben (an English dude in Anexo also) so loathe, he always said if this boy was in prison in UK where fights are always arranged and bare knuckles are used, no weapons, he won´t survive a day, I personally would have love that. Now that I´m working out and stacking up muscles, guess none of the boys here would love to be pummel into pulp if we were to go get into a real bare fist fight. But that´s not the way with Latinos, they love their knives and weapons. And they also love their gangs….

Rained heavily, nice as it will get cooler but heard when the raining season starts, it´s very terrible here in the jungle. Seen big toads, which cats and dogs in Europe will run from jumping around. I guess that is the only thing the boys here won´t eat, they all understand the jungle and the animals here, know which are edible and those that shouldn´t be touch. Anything other Chicken, fish or beef, I ain´t trying, when buying food from them, I always want to know what is used in preparing the food.

More and more Tattoos are appearing, now I get to understand why Mike said these guys are retarded, he has been here for almost 3 years, so he knows them more better than I do. Panama not having their own legal tender notes, make use of the American Dollars, and as we all know “In God We Trust” is an American Slogan, few of the boys had that Tattooed on their backs. How I wish they will allow me, I will make photo collections of all the different tattoos that we have here. I sometimes wonder if the tattoos were done after a Joint-smoking session or after a drinking session. I do like to have one, but also scare of the needles as I don´t think much attention is paid on the sterilizing of the equipment used. Maybe when I get back home, I will finally get one.

When the rain stopped, went out and found out the Bossman is around, made my way to his office and handed him the new permit for the Guitar and portable dvd player. Many of the boys came in with permits for him to sign; I hope he had a good time during his holiday and time away from the centre. He finally told me he will look into the matter, guess I have to use plan M and get my player in, for the guitar, I have a one now. That will be okay as I have been using to learn.

Back in, Milonario won´t let me rest, on me for me, wondered if he thought I went to get money from the Bossman. I have made up my mind to ignore him and I will stick to my balls.

We had someone bought us KFC (Mega Mix), that was lovely as we had that for Dinner with extra chicken Jer made, it was chicken feast that evening and loads of Ginger ale, good old whisky and some ice wouldn´t have been bad with the ginger ale.    

The water stopped running later that evening, guess they were working somewhere around the pipes, but we were lucky as we always keep some in containers and used soda plastic bottles. Good thing about this centre, we don’t really have water problem as most prisons in Panama. Back in La Joya; where I spent couple of weeks before being sent here, water is pumped from a stream around the prison and the Prisoners had to provide for storage facilities to keep the water, which comes not treated for harmful bacteria, we had to pour in bit of chlorine or boil the water to get it purified. Most days, the water does not come. We had to shower when the water comes.

It was nice of the European Embassies to strike deal with the Panamanian Authorities that they get all of us sent here, as I know the Panamanian will do anything to keep us in those places since this centre is meant for the highest bidders. Most non-Europeans and Non- Americans who are here in the centre, Paid lot of money to get here, big thanks for my Consulate that really push it hard for us to get here. Now I see why people will do anything to get here. Remembered while in the transitory jail, a Panamanian who was arrested for drug and money laundry offence, paid over 5Grand so he would be sent here. Neither has he seen nor being here before, but has heard of this place as being the heaven of all prison in panama. At the end he was sent to one of the notorious jails.

Hugo my buddy, who was release today after several Months in lockup in the Anexo, met up with me and had a dollar. But his freedom didn´t last long. His former cellmate in Pabellon has decide to carry on with life without him, didn´t want him in his cell anymore. He was given another cell, but later that night he was taken back to Anexo and actually slept in the passage handcuffed to one the bars. He was high on his regular and started a fight with his new cellmate, since all the cells were filled, he as to sleep on the passage. I believe this will be his last chance of going out from Anexo. He was screaming all night that he wants to die. Hope he doesn´t die, when he is sober he can be a nice guy and looks like Al Pacino in Scarface and talks like him and always happy.

His screams was sort of chilling through the night, was scare he will actually die. I know he will pull it through till the next day.

Spent the night reading and listening to Hugo screams, I guess Fabio my Italian bruv won´t sleep as his bed is next to Hugo and the bar that separate us from Anexo.

Wasn´t a bad day, it all ended well and thank God for the rain, hope it doesn´t bring more mosquitoes out.  Though it will be stinky all night as there is no water to flush the toilet or wash the dish, we will sleep well as our cell is much bigger and well ventilated that most cells.

Tuesday, 4th of May 2010….

Billy the Kiwi being nice to me lately, always leaving extra bread for me, maybe because I once gave him a piece of KFC which is like Diamond here. Up to find my BF in my lunch bowl on the table. Pepe has been up very early, got all the tanks (Containers) filled with water from outside.

Wasn´t long, the water came running; I did all the dishes from last night and cleaned up the cell, I tend to be the only that really care about the state of the cell on a daily basis, Manni is always using his film as an excuse why he ain´t doing much in the cell. My mates could live in the cell for days without thinking of cleaning, but I can´t, make sure I sweep the cell everyday with brush, I guess that´s the best I can do to maintain the basic hygiene here.

While outside on the passage, met Terence; the American crack head, he was asking me for baking soda, I actually have some in my cell which I used for my Pancakes. Well I told him I don´t have, when I talked about it later in the evening, it was then Jer reminded me that he had needed to make his crack. What a cracker!!!! Nice fellow though when he is sober and he actually makes one of the best Moonshine, guess from recipe he learned back in the states.

Manni out for his film as they will be having a press conference today, Jer and Pepe to school, alone in the cell did some reading while I ate my BF.

Our groceries are almost finished, we have to make arrangements to get things in, hope we get to do that soon.

Met Andorra for the letter for my laptop, he is still beating around the bush, won´t get this things done. And also a copy of Microsoft Office to install in one of the new PC in the Library, he also promised to get that for me. Hope he does that soon enough as the only PC with MS Office also has the Zuma game and the boys’ won´t let me use it.

Millonario whom I have been avoiding, came with tears in his eyes, actually begging for 25cts, was appalling, I wondered what he will do with 25cts, maybe beg others  and when he finally get a dollar will get his joint or dope. Pitied him and gave him the 25cts.

Napped for a while, and later had my guitar lesson in the cell, was nice strumming the strings. Only if the boys will allow me, I hope to learn something different while here.

My Custodio buddy who brought our phones in, got the rest of his money from Manni for the phone he brought in, hopes he will relax now.

Had to beg around for Pasta and Onions as we needed things to cook that night. We finally made our dinner and dinned, we had taken care of today. Guess tomorrow will take care of itself.

Read through the night, thinking of the Bossman and his refusal to sign my permit, but signs all rubbish for the Panamanians. And also upset with Manni for his nonchalant attitude towards the things that came to his Embassy which wasn´t allowed in by the police. Had made Schat sent some Parfum for Jesus Mum who has been of help to us, but the police won´t let them in as they were in bottle. But I know many Panamanians who had Parfums, eau de toilet brought in, we even have two bottles in my Cell. But Manni didn´t tell me of this, and who knows what he told Ana (A Panamanian who happens to be the Assistant Consul at the Brit Embassy). I have asked him several times to call her, but he kept beating around the bush. I guess I will forget about it and get something here for Jesus Mum.

Stayed till 3am reading before dozing off……………..

Wednesday, 5th of May…..

Billy dropped my BF on the table, picked them up and threw away the sausage, well; I have made up my mind not to confront him again.

The door was open and we were counted, this they do everyday guess to make sure that nobody had left during the course of the night. Well wonder what will happen when they find out. Won´t it be too late, if someone has actually escaped late in the night and they counting around 7am?

Lately been having pain on my left side, pray it´s not my heart, hope it´s my muscle as I want my heart to remain strong enough to keep me through here.

On my way out for workout, met Andorra and had him made the copy of MS office for me, had it install on the pc. Didn´t workout again as I had to do some writing. Got loads to do as I am behind on my and things to do on the pc. Andorra promised to speak with the teacher, who will be helping me with the laptop permit, hope he does it as he has been pushing it on and on.

Juez and his group are here taking over the shift, it will be money asking and request for soda. Wonder where else in the world are warders asking prisoner for money to buy shag, soda or pay for their transport home.

Got a text from Schat, about my lil boy throwing all their CD´s and DVD´s out throw the windows. He did that before, but then he was a Baby, not now, he is 3 plus, guess he will be getting longer hours on the Naughty spot; a long time out for him. Wasn´t happy with Schat as I scolded her, that more attention should have been given to them. Happy that the window is not such that can be open fully, thanks to the hook that kept it slightly closed. No response fro her, guess she is pissed and I´m too….

More rain and really hard one….hope we don´t wash up into the Canal.

Early to bed as I was upset with schat and she also with me.

Thursday, 6th of May………..

Billy had dropped my BF on the table, but Pepe put it in my bowl, ate some cereal before workout.

Didn´t go out for my workout as I heard my Consulate was here, had my shower and went out with the others boys.

We got out Monthly toiletries and loads of books, magazines, and newspapers from home. Was nice to get something different to read, and moreover know what is happening back home.

While outside, the lads kept calling out my name, guess they knew why we were out, Millonario who went out to work in the green area came back with Aubergine and called me to see, wanted money right away, told Ernesto to give a dollar for the 3pcs, later on that day, and he only gave me 2pcs.

Back in, Moreno escorted me to my cell, knew what he wants, but he only asked me to buy him chips, got him 2 bags for a dollar. Hope he doesn´t come back. Got some of the books to the Library, while there, my old country bloke who has become a die hard zuma fan was clued to the screen of the pc, while the lads from Pabellon were screaming at him to get up as he has been there for too long. I guess that is the only thing that he can do while here that takes him out of his misery in the centre.

We had some ladies from the Kaballah faith in, when they come like that, the boys are all over as they sometimes come with food. There are ladies in the centre as well, but I think they were selected to work here. None are like the Colombians Barbies, we have the fat female custodio who is always with Binoculars watching us, hope she is not peeping as most of the boys shower openly in the tap outside the old kitchen after a hot football match. Well if she does, hope she likes whatever she sees.

The Bossman sec, who doesn´t like us non-spanish foreigners as we have never made advances on her, is tall but big, many of the boys chat up, guess not for real as most of them got prettier girlfriends than her. Then the two petite ladies in the admin that does all paper work for the prisoners and also the centre´s psychologist, very small lady. Most of the guys like playing around them. But I know they ain´t getting no Punany or Pumpum as they say in Jamaica.

Most of the guys here in Galeria could pass as Girl boys, or since they have loads of time, most are seen in the shower shaving all their body hairs, even trim their eyebrows and even use liners. Wonder what they think when doing all these, men are suppose to be distinctive with our hairs and our rugged looks. But not with some these guys who spend time trying to look good more than their girlfriends and at the end of the day, they ain´t going no where.

During one of my phone conversation outside the cell, had to walk behind some cells as to hide from the custodies and also for better reception. Happened to see a used tube of KY Gel in one of the cells, one will wonder what KY Gel is doing in an all male prison. I guess the inmates in that cell will have loads to explain. Only God knows what goes on behind closed doors in the cells.

We had more chicken dinner, I´m begging to love chicken as it is the only source of getting meat protein here.

While chatting that night with my mates, told them of my findings and the KY Gel, we couldn´t help laughing. Well that and more things that goes on here which we don´t know, only those that are involves knows will know and those who really care. The Prison politics and life of the inmates here will make a very good case study for any psychology student.

Read through the night and schat is still cold towards me, but we have resumed talking and texting…. hoping it doesn´t last long as I need her more now than ever. Love her….. Hope she knows that. Tomorrow is her last appointment at the Hospital, waiting for what will happen and also praying that she is fine.

Friday, 7th of May 2010………. “AT LEAST ONE GOOD NEWS TO CHEER ME UP”

Up to wee and to a text from Schat that she is off for her appointment at the hospital. Didn´t sleep as I wanted to know what will happen or what she will be told.

But then, another Text came from her, that she is given Birth to my 3rd child, whom we decide to name Janelle. Oooooooh! What a big relieve, as everything went smoothly, her friend and former course mate who had been on a week long visit to London from Amsterdam was with her throughout the whole time. My lil Janelle is finally here, she won´t be Miss Rumbling as my son use to say, Can´t wait to see here picx.

Very strange and coincidentally my lil girl is sharing the same birthdays as Pepe our old Banker and Nelson our former cellmate who was released on the 1st of Jan this year on the Presidential pardon.

I was very happy when Schat finally called and told me how things went, due to the little complications during my son´s birth, she had to be operated at once and all went well, she was out of the theatre in less than 2 hours. She is fine and lil Miss Janelle is fine, when we were brainstorming for a name. My daughter once told her, since she wants a J name, Jayla would be a nice name for the baby, but then, it sounds more like Jail. Guess Janelle wouldn´t have love it when she grows up and learn of the situation which dad was when she was born and who suggested that name. That was nice of Jessie to have come up with a nice name. If I wasn´t in this situation, I guess we would have used that name.

Jessie and her Bruv later went with their uncles to see Schat and Janelle, they all called me from the Hospital, it was really noisy and they love the new addition to the family. Time to go back home, they didn´t want to as they were both crying. Missed them loads, pray that this ordeal ends soon so I can get back home to my family and loved ones.

I was very grateful that all these didn´t caused her to go through stress that will affect the baby´s health, as she came out very strong and healthy.

Got to the library, did some work on the new PC which I installed the MS office, but didn´t stay long as Manni and his crew will be coming in to shot a scene in the library.

Back in the cell, did some reading and spoke with Schat and also called the kids, they were very happy to see their lil sister, Jessie seems to understand, but my son don´t really know what the whole fuss about baby is.

That night, we celebrated the birth of my lil Angel with 5 bottles of Moonshine which I got from Terence through Mike his American buddy and my tight pal who wants to go into the red light business when he leaves here. Terence probably makes one of the best Moonshine here. We sang for Pepe and also rang Nelson, sang for him, the dude was stoned from drinking blowing smokes, nice as he doesn´t do dope, just pure grass, promised him to visit my home when I´m done here for proper grass.

We went on a bender all night, singing and it was cool fun as we got piss, funny how a man thinks when he´s pissed, wondered what the other cell will be thinking about us, most knew I was a Dad that day. The moonshine was a good one, made from Yeast and Sugar; the basic ingredients for beer.

Put men together and let them stay for a while, the next thing they will be thinking, won´t be sex, but drink and I guess that is why it was men despite the fact they were Monks, but came up with idea of getting pissed and while away the day.

It was a night to be remembered, we drank and sang for my Janelle, for Pepe and Nelson, wishing them a happy Birthday and many more years. I would have made one of them Janelle´s godfather, but Schat won´t be too keen about that that idea and neither will I want that also.

Before sleeping, left a Tenner on the table for agent so he can buy us Chinese rice on his way from work. Since I couldn´t get proper drink for all to share, thought that will be a good gesture to celebrate my Baby´s birth, having a proper and good meal. Hope he remembers to pick up the money.

Slept like a baby and thank God for the safe delivery of my lil Janelle……….. If life was so beautiful like a new born baby, what a good life it will be, but life has got loads of unseen, unheard and unknown ugliness, ones which we can´t see or feel until it comes to you.

Saturday, 8th of May…..

Got up, still feeling the hangover from the drink of last night, guess the best way to beat this feeling will be workout.

After a brief chat with Schat heard lil Janelle voice, it was overwhelming hearing her little voice. Loads of friends went to the hospital to visit her and the kids were so happy, guess my son wouldn´t understand all the fuss about the Baby until he realize that he is no longer the baby of the house.

Dressed up for workout as that will be the only ways to combat the fatigue from last night binge drinking. But found out that Agent forgot the money for the rice, we will have to sleep today without food as there was no food in the cell. Tried getting in touch with him, but nobody could reach him. Finally got in touch with Levi one of the guys that works outside also but on a different location from Agent.

After pleading with him to buy me the rice on his way back, he agreed, but then lied about the price, Agent got his for $2.60 a bowl, but Levi told me it´s around $4.50+ a bowl, finally told him to get me 2 bowls.

When he came back, he told me it was $4.70 a bowl, gave him a Tenner and didn´t bother about my change, was mad with agent for making me waste money on this guy. Wonder why the Panamanians acts the way they do, the always think of profit in anything they do for you. I have never seen one that will want to help you without thinking of what he will get in return.

He even had the guts to tell me, he was going on special permit outside, if I need anything I should call him, he is right!!! Guess that will be the last he will here from me. Fortunately, it may be the last he will ever get Chinese rice as they all messed up today after drinking, that cops around there wanted to cuff some. So the driver has decided not to stop there again.

Did my workout and felt very good, life was and looked normal in the centre as it´s weekend. The guys from Pabellon had their visit, guess there will be plenty to eat and smoke as most of the people smuggled things for them. So appalling how the Panamanians think, back in La Joya many mothers, wives and Girlfriends were arrested for trying to smuggle in drugs for their men locked up there. I wonder what they weren´t thinking when they were doing that. These guys are locked up for whatever crime they had been charged of, and instead of helping them through rehabilitation, they are supporting or aiding them. Maybe some does it for the profit as things are more expensive in jail than on the streets. Even foods are so expensive down here, guess soon we will be eating dust.

After workout back in the cell and in the toilet for a little shyte, the door opened, thought was one of my mates, but was surprised to see the dude who nicked my tank, knowing quite well that nobody was in, he should have close the door and not enter, but he entered the cell quietly and started looking around, maybe what next he will nick. It was then I popped out my head from the curtain, he was surprised to see me and also shocked. This is one of the reasons why cells are always locked when nobody is around. He left without uttering a word, what an ill-bred idiot; my little Jessie keeps conversation better than this dude.

Later that evening, made something nice from the Chinese rice we got, was thinking for Nasi Goreng, so did something like that, thanks to Soya sauce, like Chris Rock said, if the food ain´t right, just add Ketchup to it and it will be ok, you can never go wrong on Ketchup. We dinned well that night and had the rest of the moonshine, Pepe and Jer won´t drink from it. That has made me think twice about drinking moonshine, these guys been here longer than us, I guess they know better.

Spent the rest of the night in my solace, thanking God for my lil Baby and also for the gift of life as each day comes and goes and we still live to see another new day.

Sunday, 9th of May……..

Throughout the night and early hours, drank loads of water, finally woke up around 3ish, guess the body didn´t want to sleep, made several visit to the loo to wee. Back to sleep until Billy the Kiwi came calling with my BF. Tried napping again, just couldn´t, up for workout, glad as my stamina is improving as I do more lapse on the field now. Went to do some weights, but couldn´t do much, as thoughts flashed through my memory. Sometimes, you wondered what you are actually doing here. Guess since I´m here, like Manni said, one had to leave a legacy here.

Back in the cell, did some shoulder work with the bar in the cell, then shower and used the remaining rice to make something with eggs, shared it with Jer who was glad to have it, was nice I didn´t throw it away last night.

Agent back from visit, as he entered, Jer with one of the guys from Pabellon came in with him. Was surprised when he pull out his knife from his pants, what the heck does that suppose to mean, they played some expensive joke on Agent. The guy slides his blade back in his pants, what of if mistakenly the blade cuts through his little john? Guess they´ve never thought of that.

One will wonder why they walk around with knives like Hunters, and that is one reason, you can never get into fight with any one of them as you never know who is armed. Thus, one has to ignore and brush aside whatever the boys’ throws at you in order to avoid issues. This particular guys goes out on permit to work everyday and is due to be release soon, I will bet with anybody that in less than 6 Months after his release, he will be back in Jail.

We heard or it may be prison rumours, that Bambam that escaped with his crew had been re-arrested and two members of his crew had been liquidated, guess by other gangs. How wish they knew, they would have stayed back here as this place was the safest place for them.

The centre was been prepared for a big meeting with some Government officials, one will wonder what happened to all the Conference halls in the big hotels around the city. Well maybe the meeting will be held here to bring to all those that will be coming that they may each end up here if they mess up. Good idea, but then we know what it means having a meeting here, total lock down till they are done.

We had the last of our fish, hope we get more soon. That we wonder how we will get it as I can trust any of these Panamanians to help with shopping as they will rip you in any way they can.

Spent the night reading, reminiscing and harking back to memory lane, what a life one had lived. Like Manni said, after he was arrested, and on the bus en route to La Joyita where he was before coming here, as the bus drove further from the city and losing sight of the city line. He said, he had had his share of the good life, so whatever comes, he is resolved to take it the way it comes. He once thought that he will either be killed or die from food poisoning, but glad he pull it through and here he is today, the brain behind a prison´s film project; The first ever in Panama and probably same in most of the Latin American countries. Nice having a buddy who is optimistic about life, even when life doesn´t look that optimistic and promising.

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