Written in December 1999, at the end of my eight months researching in Venezuela

Coffee fixes.
The smell of sunny mornings and of the earth as it begins to rain.
Falling in lust every time I leave the house.
Cheap cigarettes and bargain-basement alcohol.
The warmth of the Venezuelans, their humour and their banter.
The vulgar expressions...
Mist over forests at dawn and birds chattering in trees.
Azure skies and crisp, blinding light.
My jeep, my flat and my independence.
Diving, snorkelling, trekking and boating.
Fresh fish and seafood.
Lightning storms and torrential rains that wash away the sins of the city.
My friends.
Change and challenge...


Selfish, immature, impatient and dangerous drivers.
Wasting time in queues at the bank and the telephone and electricity offices.
Potholes, overheating brakes and mechanics' bills.
The feeling there's always more to do.
Roadside checkpoints and big guns.
Fax, phone and email numbers.
Electricity and water cuts.
Scratched CDs.
Sweltering heat.
Car alarms.
Desperation and hunger, poverty and filth.
Hypocrisy and long political speeches.
Meals eaten on my own.
Lugging my camera around with me.
Deadline angst.

"la cola" in Caracas close to the Jardin Botanico



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