Sunday, April 17, 2005


Rave, do you notice anything different this morning?

"I love the sound of car alarms in the morning. Cars being broken into all over Quito. A return to normalcy. And no more of that damned honking!"

I appreciate it, too. That "beepbeep, beepbeepbeep" nearly pushed me over the edge yeserday. It must have got to the president of Bananalandia, too. When I was eating chicken curry across the street and re-reading "La eternidad por fin empieza un lunes", he appeared on the t.v. mumbling something about God and consensus, and his ears looked decidedly droopy.

"It would have been easier to buy a pair of earplugs and spare us the Lord's name in vain. And the warhorse of consensus looks like one of the horses of the Apocalypse. By the way, the chicken curry you brought me was tasty, but skimpy."

I know. I felt sorry for those guys opening a new restaurant. I mean we've been here less than 3 weeks, and that location has already seen one die and the nameless Indian open. I told them their portions were too big.

"Next time you get an urge to be noble, remember the hungry Raven waiting for take-out, will you?"

Sorry; Rave. It's this goofy place. I am sure on the Hierarchy of Political Goofiness, Ecuador is in first place--with Panama and the Dominican Republic--hideouts for expresidents who don't want to try Miami--hot on its heels.

"The Latin American Hierarchy, you mean. Some of those African countries that change their names every 20 minutes are right up there on the Goofymeter, too."

Well, we're not there. The thing that really puzzles me most, Rave, is....

"You want to know where they get all those judges to be able to fire the Supreme Court every couple of months. Maybe they aren't judges at all, but winos off the street."

Actually, no. I wonder, with all the honking and beating on pots and pans and waving the flag in the street and calling for the president's resignation, how this place still manages to be so boring.

"Uh oh, trouble. Do I see a Boeing 757 in our immediate future?"

Maybe. I dunno, Rave. Wouldn't you rather be in Caracas?

"Where I'd honestly like to be is in my normal habitat--somewhere above 10 degrees north latitude--instead of roosting on the equator."

Just north of here is a spot where you can put one foot in each hemisphere. We could go there next weekend.

"Big deal. I don't want to be humored. I am just tired of being one of a kind here."

If we go back to Foxilandia--er, Mexico--you'll be spitting nails in your coffee every morning because your candidate, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, probably won't get to run for president next year.

"Those dirty bastards who are subverting the law to eliminate him have given almost as big a black eye to democracy as Bush has."

"True. And Fox at the pope's funeral in Rome telling everybody that Mexico has set an example for the world.

"An example of shameless skullduggery. That Fox makes a bigger fool of himself every time he goes to Europe. It must be a requirement of his frequent flyer plan."

So, which is it, Rave--Bananalandia, Venezuela or Foxilandia?

"Let me sleep on it. If I wake up to 'beepbeep, beepbeepbeep', I may want to wave adios to Bananalandia from a window over the wing."

Or e-mail Acme Products for a heat-seeking hand grenade?

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