Night trauma in Africa

25 Nov

It’s 2am and La Paz hospital is very calm. It’s dark out. Warm. The air is still…

I was woken up by heavy banging. The building door was being slammed and someone was screaming insanely. At first I thought I was dreaming but pretty quickly realised someone was shouting outside and pounding on the door. I quickly woke Nico up to the noise. He opened the bedroom door and I could hear someone scream out his name. Terrorized I tried to hold on to him while he headed over to the window to look outside. You cannot imagine the feeling of being totally unarmed (and I don’t necessarily mean arm guns) in a foreign place like this where your presence is not always appreciated… At least where it doesn’t feel to be…

Nico got dressed while we realised that it is the (really adorable) security guard G.who is screaming downstairs. I could feel the blood rushing up my head and was shaking while Nico walked out the door. I don’t think I ever felt this scared… I tried to sneak up by the window, see and not be seen, and heard G. moan while screaming “Help. Mr Nicolas. Help”… Needless to say how I felt… And 2 hours later still feel…

Nico went downstairs, I heard the door open, scared to my bones for every noise that came after… The office downstairs was robbed. G., him, beaten up badly in the head… Bleeding and scared.

I was still shaking when Nico came back upstairs telling me he’s driving him to the hospital. I got dressed and followed him back downstairs. Too afraid to stay home alone. Just as scared of what I would see… G. was standing half straight. his t-shirt around his head… bleeding. In pain. Me… I didn’t know what to do. terrorized. Just standing there…

We drove him to the hospital where he was immediately taken care of. There was no one. Just us. Waited for his wife to come and take him back home… A home that I saw. A sight that I saw for the first time with my own eyes… I don’t know what was more painful. Seeing G. beaten up as he was for stolen money, or seeing the shack he lived in with some Christmas decoration to lighten up his world…

It is almost 5am. I am now back home. Siting on the sofa with the TV running just to hear voices in the background, a full glass of wine, smoking and waiting for Nico and his assistant (living in the flat next door) to come back up.

Sleep, no more. Shocked, shaking, still… Is this what I want ?

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2 Responses to “Night trauma in Africa”

  1. ima November 25, 2010 at 9:34 AM #

    Jesus, Moshe and Mahomet!!!
    Can’t believe my eyes! This is the second time it happens. How is Nico? What measures is he going to take? Obviously it can’t go on like this. Why not a big mean guard dog!
    Pusi.

  2. Dan Hayon November 25, 2010 at 5:15 PM #

    We’ll send Jules over SAP! Don’t know a better home guard.
    Meanwhile, keep cool. Or better, make a little poster with his photo and CV and put copies all over the town.

    Pusi me too.

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