Monthly Archives: December 2015

No Hay Nadie Como Tu – part three

Dear readers,

Wedding three – Roy Padgett and Valeria Tomé

For those who’ve been reading my blog for the longer term, the groom’s surname might serve as something of a reminder of my first few months in Honduras. Cast your mind back to 2011, when I wrote frequently about my clashes with a Mormon granny in the small town in Tatumbla, just outside Tegucigalpa. Her name is Blanca and she has something of a reputation for being difficult. It were a traditional house in a rural town where cock’s call or the first bus to Tegucigalpa’s horn awoke you at dawn, and it stood in the shadow of the department of Francisco Morazan’s tallest mountain, Uyuca, which I once scaled but got a mass of garapata and mosquito bites. My make-shift bedroom was in the living area just outside the kitchen, where she would fry pig’s ears on Saturday mornings and invite Mormon missionaries, largely from the US and Republican-loving, doing their time in Tatumbla and trying to convert a coffee loving, beer drinking Brummie, to a faith that, well, prohibits the two beverages plus many more luxuries that I made doubly clear I was not prepared to give up. Mami Blanca had lived alone for many years and suffered from many ailments; bronchitis and depression being two of several. I must admit, it was nice to live without some creature comforts but Blanca’s health and restrictive rules were beginning to get to me, and I guess it began to show because her son, Roy Padgett, offered me to move into his beautiful house up the road in Linaca; something I jumped at, but I had already my mind up to move to Tegucigalpa soon after. However, the month or two of living with the Padgetts went fast due to the wonderful fact that it was just plain fun, and a massive thanks goes to Roy (senior), Xenia (mother), Danny, Christian, Andy and last, but most definitely not least, Roy (junior), who I am proud to say attended his wedding last week and his name sits at the top of this post. Countless waffles/pancakes on Sunday and non-stop piss-taking in the evening. I missed them after I left. It was a warm home.

I’ve not lost touch with the family. From time to time, I caught up with Danny for coffee but we seemed tied up with different commitments, and I felt an awful mate when he hurt himself in a fall and I failed to visit him. When I began working at Dowal School, I learned that Roy worked there too. Being a Liverpool and Motagua fan, we found that we never talked about matters professional, but just our mad lust for football (a lie of course, topics of movies, girlfriends (now wives) and families also made up a large percentage of our conversation). One of the strange discussions we have is supporting our national team. He follows England (he has English ancestors hailing from Yorkshire if I remember right) and I follow Honduras, and we both accuse each other of having blind hope for our adopted chosen teams. I guess we are both right to laugh at each other.

It was a beautiful wedding at Roy’s home to a lovely lass named Valeria who I’ve been fortunate enough to bump into frequentely. They always look happily in love and I’m thrilled for them. The Roy I lived with seemed shy and frustrated with a few elements of his life (maybe it was because Liverpool were playing really s–t at the time). The Roy I know now is confident, happy and chilled with life. Suffice to say, he’s a changed man, and Valeria has played a huge part in that.

I must admit, as well as the wedding, I was dead excited to pass through Tatumbla and by the house. The granny has since moved to Roatan (if that doesn’t make her happy . . .) so her house was put up to rent and now looks to have lost its character without her nagging spirit. I was reminded of the night I was locked out and had to sleep on a steel bench where underneath lived tortoises. Apart from the newly laid road entering the town, nothing has changed in the four or five years I’ve been away, which is a good thing as it leaves the place with a sprinkle of a kind of traditional gold dust, with aromas of wood burning at fire places and villagers running and gossiping happily around the stoned streets, which I feel is lost in many towns with the rise of globalisation, etc. That distinct lack of convenience and creature comforts is an endearing quality, salt of earth and real conversations again. Something more genuine and socially healthy about it. Another reason I found returning to Tatumbla exciting was, and maybe this is brought on with all the recent Star Wars publicity, the bizarre feeling of nostalgia and deja vu, which I also felt the first day I ever arrived there. It’s something to do with the rolling hills of pine trees and small communes and amazing sunsets and starry nights; it somehow reminds me of Yoda’s planet in the Empire Strikes Back or the Ewok’s village in Return of the Jedi, giving me a cute sentiment of coziness I felt when I first saw the movies as a child. Maybe that gold dust I was talking about is actually of the Hollywood sort. I always dreamt of a friendly yet furious furry creature jumping out in front of the car with a spear, yet all I got was Andy Padgett (I hope the world’s greatest Oasis fan is reading this!).

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Creeping along the dusty 3/4 mile road that stretches from Tatumbla’s Mormon Church to Linaca’s focal roundabout which has a charming park in the middle, stuck behind a truck and then a tuc-tuc that somehow managed to hog both sides of the road, annoying an already tired Pamela who’d traveled from Choluteca in southern Honduras that morning. You take the first right and then a left down and then up a dirt road that I remember had a hybrid kind of rat and dog snapping at wheels and leaping up at windows as drivers sped past. Whether the dog rat has fulfilled its deathwish or it was just having a quiet day, I’ll leave that little unimportant life mystery to the Gods to re-tell. This stretch of road leaves a layer of muck on all cars, and ours was no different as we parked along a very narrow country road that scales the side of a hill. We then climbed the drive and up the windy path with beautiful branches sprouting exotic flowers, leaves, aromas and rustic photo frames of Roy and Valeria. The day was clouded over but it was bright in spirit and it wasn’t long before I got to introduce Pamela to papa Roy; full of mischief as always.

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The ceremony was in the garden, fully organised and laid out by the happy couple themselves. While waiting for it to start, Pamela was busy going bonkers with her new selfie stick which I wanted to lunge into the field of annoying gadgets which we all know sits at the gates of hell. Saying that though, it would prevent Pamela from fully exercising her photography talents, which you can see below.

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Old Dowal friends appeared which was great as I never properly had the chance to say adios to many of them. Roy stood smiling at the make-shift altar, with music whistling away in the breeze to Ed Sheeran. The attendees grew quiet with silent excitement and smiles and all that could be heard was the light breeze shifting dead leaves from one random spot to the next with music. At that point Pamela whispered in my ear, “What were you thinking when I was walking down the aisle?”

My response was, trying to be humorous and rather loudly, “¡Apúrate maje!”, meaning in less than charming Honduran Spanish, “Get ya skates on, dude”, just at the moment Valeria was tackling the slow descent of a small but tricky hill in her wedding dress.

Heads turned and the looks I received from Pamela snd attendees were full of profound scorn. Note to self: just be romantic and quiet when your wife asks you such questions.

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The pastor delivered a lovely speech about life and marriage, after of which the vows were made and Roy planted an snog on Valeria’s lips that won him plaudits.

Next: food time, which was perfect everyone was starving, and it was brought to us by no other than Roy Padgett Senior, owner of the restaurant Mami Luz, famous for its soups. I got to catch up with family and former colleagues, which completed a few circles for myself, in terms of catching up the past. All good though.

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A blessed day to say the least. It was great to see Roy join the club (he introduced to Motagua; I felt it was only correct of me to do the same for him). We saw the newly-weds cut the cake and said our goodbyes. Like everyone did, I wish them a long happy life together.

To be continued.


No Hay Nadie Como Tu – part two

Dear readers,

Yesterday I mentioned I’d been invited to a wedding taking place in England in October 2016. Since then I have been invited to another in Spain in June, which I will write about after I’ve spoken of the one in England.

Wedding three – Robert Handy and Hayley Allen

I was told that when one hits 30, they spend the rest of their weekends attending weddings, which is brilliant if there’s free alcohol. I have to get there first though. It’s the biggest drawback living so far away; it makes it very difficult to attend beautiful life events of family and friends. I’ve always dreamed of inventing a vortex where I can walk through a door and up in Brum. Picture that, spending a cultural morning in Valle de Angeles, then spend the afternoon getting wasted in Moseley. Or, at least, hauling the UK at least 5000 miles closer using a big tug rope. Back to the wedding, if I strike it lucky with a well-paid job soon, I’ll do my best.

Rob Handy is a great old mate from my days at Solihull Sixth Form College, which I attended almost 20 years studying a GNVQ in Leisure and Tourism. Only Rob entered that career out of our mates in the end. Due to him maturing at quite a young age, we all thought he would marry first. It turns out he was saving himself that little bit longer, and Mr. Malta seems to have met a lovely belle, who I’ve not had the fortune of meeting yet, named Hayley Allen. Judging by the photos, they look very happy and I trust Rob has chosen well. I hope to see them both in October. I know it’s wrong to mention exes in moments like this, but down the years I’ve observed from the sidelines Rob’s trials and tribulations with relationships, and I guess Stu and I always hoped he would strike lucky sooner or later, being one of life’s better people, and now it looks like he has. Sitting here chuffed in Honduras.

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Wedding four – Sara Recuenco and Tío Pepe

Just to clearify, Tío Pepe isn’t his actual real name but a famous brand of Spanish sherry. Tío means uncle, but it is also a colloquial yet charming way the Spanish refer to their buddies. Sara didn’t tell me Pepe’s family name when she told me her happy news with a very early Monday morning WhatsApp announcement. Until then I will continue to call him Tío Pepe (as in buddy Pepe, as well as in the hope that he enjoys the odd tipple of this famous Spanish beverage which has a famous light-bulbed billboard sitting high at one end of Plaza Del Sol, the focal central point of the great city Madrid). Sara is a good old mate who I met at UCLAN, where she spent her eramus year studying journalism with another good friend of mine named Maria. Through my various adventures through Spain, the two have shown me around and get to know Madrid in the eyes of Madrideñas, something I’ve always been grateful for. I will try and make it. Like mentioned before, it’s the biggest drawback of living so far away. Sara’s had a long lasting love for Tío Pepe, and I think she’s fond of her fiance too (I’ll try to make that my last Tío Pepe joke in this blog post). They were novios at university for two years, and then rekindled their relationship later along the line, and are now ready for a life as one. I guess time apart helps realise what you mean to each other. I’ve not met Tío Pepe (although I’ve had shared many drinks with him. (Sorry, I couldn’t help one last pun)), but like Rob above, I trust she’s making a great move. Sara’s great, energetic, almost typically passionately Spanish, and I’m dead pleased for her.

Pepe and Sara are tying the knot on 4th June in a small town just outside Madrid. ¡Felicidades!

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No Hay Nadie Como Tu – part one

Dear readers,

Calle 13 fans will be very familiar with the title of this update. Calle 13 consists of a duet, half brothers René Pérez Joglar “Residente” and Eduardo José Cabra Martínez, who I’ve written about before. My update shares the name of one of their most famous songs, featuring Café Tacuba, which is an uplifting, poignant and humorous number and stands as one of my favourites. The title literally translates as “There’s No One Like You”. Calle 13 are known for their interesting tongue-in-cheek and sometimes politically inspired lyrics (poking fun at Gringos, British, popular culture and powerful elite) and this is no different, but more observational and satirical about the oddities of life. If you’re not charmed by it, you’re a robot. That’s  a fact. Deal with it. For those who don’t understand the lyrics, this is a good enough reason in itself to learn the idioma española. ¡Vaya!

Calle 13 – No Hay Nadie Como Tu

The theme of this post is actually about marriage, amor, so I felt the song and it’s title tied in well. On 25th July this year, I got married, and this Christmas will be our first as a married couple. Not that we started off a trend or anything, but over this weekend I know of three weddings that have taken place (for ’tis the season to get married, obviously), only one of which I was physically able to attend, and I’ve been invited to another in England in October 2016. I’ll start with the two that I didn’t attend.

Wedding one: Stephen Louis Matute Osorio and Nina Ordoñez

Stephen is a former collague of mine at Laureate International Universities. In the short time I was there I learned what lovely guy he is. I don’t know his new wife but they look extremely happy in the wedding photos which I of course hope is everlasting. As far as I know they’re in Miami for the honeymoon. I bet they wish that were everlasting. A few former colleagues attended the ceremony. I wish them all the best. !Felicidades!

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Wedding two: No idea

I’m only including this because I saw my friends announcing on Facebook they were attending a wedding which wasn’t the wedding I was a attending nor ol’ Stephen’s, and I thought, “What a coincidence! Another wedding!” I just hope it wasn’t my friends saying it was they attending their own wedding. Nontheless, I wish the couple without a name a very happy life together. In the spirit of things, I’m including a photo of Scott and Charlene from Neighbours, also known as Kylie and Jason, Australia’s most famous fictional romance.

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Angry Anderson – Suddenly

To the people of Latin America, whereas the Colombians produce all the best tacky soap operas in español, Australians do the same for us in English.

To be continued….


Book covers

Dear readers,

Yes. I love reading. I love plotlines and great prose and thought-provoking concepts. I love sitting there for hours writing at my laptop or with a pen and paper and crafting my own ideas for books and blogs and articles and scenarios and letting it all pour out of me without a care for. It can be disciplined or ill-disciplined. The muse comes when it comes.

What I also enjoy is seeing how books market themselves. The cliche, “You shouldn’t judge a book by it’s cover” is exactly what publishers want you to do. In many cases, the most perverse and scandalous the better. Many publishers, I imagine, use carefully illustrated images with artistic connotations with people adopting curious glances or items or artefacts that belong to the plot. The first hook, so to speak. I don’t know if authors have so much say on it. I can only assume publishers and marketers and graphic designers choose the colour combinations and fonts, etc. After all, book-selling is a highly competitive industry, the experts are needed, meaning book-covers must immediately catch the eye of people like yours truly who would happily live in bookstore scouring every cover and synopsis. It’s true, some books are sold through movie release or word of mouth, maybe due to scandalous content (the Fifty Shades series, por exemplo).

Recently, I have come across many books on the net dating back to the 60s with some beautifully corrupt artwork and retro drawings gracing  the covers. Many look like a Jack Vettriano painting, but with more sensational condiments to thicken the narrative’s sauce. A typical cover might consist of a mystious volumuntious lady posing in various states of undress looking conceitfully into the eyes of what seems to be a none-the-wiser oiled man dressed in a suit or tux or random cowboy outfit. They look as though they’re catered for a range of genres, but they feel very much “sexual noir” or “femme fatale”; the female being the villain or anti-hero, but it could be me talking nonsense because I’ve read not one but I feel I need a whole collection, just because the covers are so lustfully retro and cool. One thing for sure, some of Ian Fleming’s Bond books used some of this artwork. You only hope that the quality of the content do the book cover’s justice.

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The images provoke thoughts and plot-lines leaving little to the imagination (yet so much more thought-provoking and classy than today’s porn) but make you desperately needing to pick up and read, rather than the glossy photos on billboards where women are photo-shopped to be lusted after and cause I don’t know how many car accidents. This is classy yet sinful advertising causing far less motor accidents unless you’re the type who reads erotica while driving. Yes, this is explicit and direct marketing using the hypodermic needle that blasts metaphorically speaking into the loins of a reader and leaves them in a hurricane of devious reading. In the 60s, I do wonder if this would have been considered porn.

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Without further ado, here’s a link to a blog by J. Kingston Pierce, who did a Killer Covers project based on works of Robert E. McGinnis. You can find a lot more by googling his name. Enjoy.


Arnold Peralta

Dear readers,

It’s so easy to start an article by adopting Bill Shankley’s famous quotes about football being more important than life (when it obviously isn’t), especially when a tragedy occurs connected to the beautiful game. Again, violence rocks Honduras after hearing the midfield star, Arnold Peralta, was shot dead in his home city La Ceiba. No one quite knows the full story but it will surely be revealed in this aftermath. It seems to have been a drive-by shooting at a shopping centre car park. Suffice to say, like with all murders of high-profile persons, there’s much shock, but also an overwhelming feeling of helplessness that maybe we shouldn’t be shocked at all. High, middle or low profile, rich or poor, everyone’s target in this “life is cheap” ambience, where nobody has a special right to avoid a violent death; if you don’t care about a man who represents your country in the country’s number one sport, you’re unlikely to care about anyone. If you you lower the price of life, with corruption and impunity, incidents like this will happen.

The murderers at the time of writing are on the loose, so their motive isn’t yet known, if it ever will be (murderers are seldom caught, especially if the murdered are not of a higher status. Either that or the police just don’t have the resources or are embroiled in it). If it’s narco and gang-related, there will be little surprise, especially after what happened to Wilson Palacios’s brother. The cocaine trade has imbalanced the communities with corruption and social problems and murders just play a part of everyday.

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Glasgow Rangers

He was due to go to last year’s World Cup in Brazil but was left out after suffering an ankle injury just days before the tournament. He was part of Honduras’s heroic 2012 Olympic Games squad, playing a defensive midfield role and possessed a snarling tenacity that made many opponents fear him, as well as try to wind him up. Something of a Roy Keane type player that got the team moving, he got a fair share of cat calls and criticism. I personally admire a player like that who can give a game character. He was playing for Glasgow Rangers this time last year, and won a Scottish League One title while there I believe. He returned to Honduras in January and was playing for my team’s arch enemy, Olimpia, where he played a leading role in their cup double earlier in the year. At 26, he seemed to be reaching his peak. Being a Celtic and Motagua fan, I wish the former Olimpia and Rangers man rests in peace.

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You can only really pray for him and his family and hope it doesn’t happen again. Feels helpless, doesn’t it! The world’s tensions are high with wars in the Middle East and terrorist attacks in Europe and Africa. The human race is too used to death and murder. Is it a sign of the times or has it always been this way? Is it too much to ask for people to simply look after each other, care for each other, not kill each other? Humans have evolved into a dangerous, strange species. Sad times.


10 Favourite Books – part 20 – Honourable Mentions

Dear readers,

It feels quite emotional to write this. To those who follow my blog will know that for the past few months I’ve been writing about my favourite books and others that have wildly inspired me but didn’t quite make it on to the favourites list. I started it in late September in a Espreso Americano coffeehouses near my now former work at Laureate International Universities. They were happy days, and they still are, although a lot has happened with work (which I wrote about in my post Positivity) and in Honduras (such as the Rosenthal family, one of the richest families in Central America, who had members of the family arrested in New York and a whole load of assets frozen such as Banco Continental, the El Tiempo newspaper and a zoo which has left crocodiles and lions dying from starvation, and more than 10,000 unemployed. It seems to be for alleged money laundering and narco offences, investigated and caught by the DEA. All of this I’ve not written about in former posts, anyway, due to one of my favourite subjects: BOOKS!!)

I wrote many of these updates just before work in El Hogar and the canteen on the ground floor at Ceutec and I enjoyed every second of it. The thoughts and memories that these works of art in literature provoked. Rants and chuckles. I must have looked like a madman frowning and laughing hysterically to myself.

My last book of honorable mentions is one of Latin America’s most famous works in literature, history books and journalistic pieces. I have mentioned it before and even created a bulletin board in my former job at Dowal School in memory of the author who died earlier this year. You will see the name and title below.

Open Veins of Latin America by Eduardo Galeano

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Of all days, there has probably never a better one than today to write about this book. Read the letters in red just below the title. “Five Centuries of the Pillage of a Continent”. If you know anything about football, the real sort (not American rugby with helmets and padding), you will have seen a great hoohaa about corruption scandals that is finally forcing Sepp Blatter’s mafia-type FIFA organisation to its knees. Yes, those big old Swiss FIFA buildings, which looked strong enough withstand atomic bombs of ridicious allegations, is now being raided more than what Pablo Escobar ever experience. The Swiss police have almost taken up residence there; taking them away from their Toberlone scoffing and clock synchronsing rituals. We humble mortals have always smelt that unpleasant fishy scent coming from that little demon’s mouth (Sepp Blatter’s), which makes Penzance harbour smell a bowl of roses. Yesterday, as it happens, 16 members of FIFA were arrested, pretty much all of them are Latin American, and two in particular are Honduran. They are:

1. Rafael Leonardo Callejas Romero – former President of Honduras and of its football association

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Rafael Leonardo Callejas Romero

2. Alfredo Hawit Banegas – Fifa vice-president and Concacaf president

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I don’t think there is bearly a wink of surprise about the corrupt deeds of these two men, especially the former where there have been a whole colourful array of corrupt allegations about him and his cronies during their time in power (a lawyer told me that Callejas had 14 corruption cases brought against him after his term in power in the early 90s, but each one was thrown out of court at the first stage in the process because judges found insufficient evidence. Not only that, when asked why family had suddenly come into so much money, he claimed he’d won two lotteries in Egypt and Germany, which makes him extremely lucky or a ridiculous liar; make your own judgement. Furthermore, Callejas is used as an example of corruption at Harvard University). There is surprise, however, that they’ve been caught, especially Callejas, who as it seems is something of a slippery Artful Dodger when it comes to escaping the clutches of the law, right out of Sepp Blatter’s ol’ book. Well now they’ve been so, and the two it seems will be extradited today to the USA for questioning over racketeering, accepting bribes and wiring money accusations. They look like mobsters so there shouldn’t be too much surprise. There are a few bets on Callejas riddling out of it somehow, though.

How does this tie in with this book? Well, quite neatly and ironically as a matter of fact. Galeano was very direct in his blaming in the pillaging of his beautiful continent, with a lot of the fingers pointed at the gringos (not to forget the British (which made me very embarrassed in places), Portuguese and Spaniards). Now, through all the CIA’s, FBI’s and DEA’s meddling in politics throughout these splendid countries, Honduras (I’m not sure about the neighbouring countries) is strongly applauding the yankees this time around. There is a feeling of “enjoying the discomfort” of these very rich crooks. Justice is being served. I’m not sure it makes up for five centuries of pillaging, however.

Eduardo Galeano was a bit of a lefty from Uruguay with a great habit for telling it how it is, especially in politics. While this maybe very commendable, it was also extremely dangerous while growing up in South America in the 1960s and 70s when violent right-wing dictatorships went around murdering dissidents almost like it were a past time. He was forced to leave Uruguay, then Argentina, and then ended up in Franco’s Spain (one might ask if he had a deathwish). In my years in Honduras, I have heard much resentment regarding the Spanish rule, saying they brought murder and rape, took the natural resources, and left the people with a culture and the genetics for being corrupt and tardiness. The latter part is hard to judge. I’m not sure the Mayans or Lenca indians were always innocent. For many, celebrating Independence Day from the Spanish doesn’t mean much because very soon after the gringos moved in with the Banana Republic and became the unofficial rulers of Honduras and many other countries through Latin America, with military bases and CIA crawling all over the place. Nearly all the Latin American countries are in debt to the gringos, who keep known corrupt politicians and in many cases murderous dictators in power, and do their best to rid of anyone they dislike. Salvador Allende and General Pinochet in Chile, for example. These are American politicians, may I add; not the American people.

As stated above, Galeano’s fingers are also pointed at the Brits, astute businessmen and gentlemen to some but also crooks to many, who paid next to nothing for paying for rescources, fooling and forcing innocent and naive village people to continue living in poverty while they made millions. Some people have told me they wish Honduras had been colonised by the Brits, but what good would that have done? Look at Uganda and Zimbabwe and Pakistan and the poverty in India. Colonists did some God awful things in every part of the globe, but the Brits continue to do so, especially when looking at how they meddle in the Middle East (it’s most embarrassing that we sent Tony Blair there, of all people, as a peace consultant).

The book awoke my curiosity about many things political across Latin America. The reason it didn’t make my top ten was I thought it could rant on a little (unlike my blog!!). He was obviously a well-read man and a great story-teller, but his voice was angry and he spat facts at you at a rapid rate that you had to put the book down for a while and catch your breath. This hasn’t stopped me admiring him and wanting to read more though. Going back to football, a friend and former colleague of mine, Guillermo Varela, recommended another book by Galeano, which you can see below, and no doubt talks about corruption in football. I have been tempted to buy it in Spanish but it costs nearly £30 which is out of my price range while I’ve not got a job. If anyone in Honduras has a copy, please let me borrow it. Pretty please.

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Callejas gone, but this of books series not quite out. I have just one more.

Rum Diaries by Hunter S. Thompson

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This has been a long-term favourite since my university days. Hunter S. Thompson is/was labelled a gonzo journalist, a kind of sensationalist take on reality through the medium of journalism. I loved it and craved to live something based on Thompson’s life, hedonistic, writing and in Latin America. I’ve certainly fulfilled the latter two but calmed on the former. My old mate, housemate and journalistic hack, Dutch Matt (he carries the name Dutch not because he’s stingy with money (he’s actually one of the most generous) but because he hails from Leiden in Holland and there was no other way differentiating him from all the other English Matts on the course but referring to his nationality. Yes baby, that’s how we roll in England; positive xenophobia!) used to try and make every Oxdown Gazette article (the old fictional newspaper about the old fictional town that NCTJ used to train journos how to research and write articles; all trained journos remember it) that little bit more interesting. We would take a press release about a chippy that had burned down or a controversial building plans from the city council and we would transform it into a news story. However, Matt and I would always find a steamy orgy or scandalous edge in there somewhere which turned a fictional harmless story into a ball of sleeze and almost pornographic. We always called it the Hunter S. Thompson affect. Some of it remains in my own writing. Much fictional writing is based on a true story anyway, as Martin Amis says, but it’s the writer’s job to make reality less boring and spice it up. The Sun and The Daily newspaper does it everyday, but they spin it into yarns of bullshit and racism.

I can’t remember the book too well but I know its set in Puerto Rico and based on Thompson’s life as a journalist. There was a movie based on it but I’ve not seen it, nor do I want to after hearing the reviews. The book, however, contains sex, jealousy, violence and mayhem while being hilariously satirical and profound and not forget horrific; everything to inspire a twenty-something year old journalism student. He reminds me of the down and outs I’ve read in Bukowski books, but less sombre, more high life and definitely more stoned. He’s still something of a pioneer in journalism and I’m still inspired, but as I said above, not to live out the hedonism.

Why didn’t it reach my favourite ten? I guess other books overtook it for their substance which could be described as being more profound. It would have been in my top ten at one point, but don’t underestimate the impact that this book had on me, on journalism, and on culture. I’ve not read Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. Maybe one day. Rum, sex and the Carribbean. Themes for quite a sinful read.