Ok. This is not going to be easy. I want to finish this, it's been too long. After the death in October of our Bo Nesto, ( Bob's Obituary) I left it too long. The last chapters were not finished, there were lots of notes from Bob to himself about things he wanted to include but never got around to. I cleaned them up as much as possible and hope the story works anyway. This is clearly unfinished, and needed more work, but thanks for reading. A third book was underway, working title Evo/Devo about the present regime. I will post this next, but have no idea of how finished it was. There's a revised version but still lots of notes for further work. The last few times I saw Bob, he kept going on at me to publish the third book. I kept going on at him to finish the second book. Too sad, so I'll stop there.
Here'a how to find the third book: Evo Devo to appear soon!
Chapter 21: Going Goni Gone
The very next morning, Koff awoke early with the realization that events, although grinding to their inevitable finale, were moving too slowly and a decisive push would be necessary to force Goni into resignation or exile. Huddled in the rear of the rickety truck on which volunteers from the Alto were being ferried past the heaps of stones and rubble that littered the motorway, he endeavoured to explain to the fellow members of the krew the inspiration that had come to him in last night’s dreamscape.
“The main affinity that ties us to Goni is that we’re all gringos.” And as he had anticipated, the others bristled at such a connection. “There are dumbo gringos and.......” Sandy began protesting.
“Us. It’s all the same to those battling, life and death, hell or high water, against Goni at this moment. So why not recognize the association. I propose in the name of all righteous gringos that we found right now our own Gringos Against Goni Society.” Whereupon he burst into song to the chorus of the Chuck Berry song, Johnny B. Goode, singing, namely, what became the new club’s official chant, “Altogether now, ‘Go go Goni – Goni begone’ ‘Go go Goni – Goni begone’ ‘Go go Goni – Goni begone’.
This bout of inspiration from Koff sealed the point straightaway and the krew on an ardent high swear their allegiance to this Society which exists even to this day while Goni skulks in his protected exile in Chicago or Miami or wherever.
“You notice the motorway’s still open,” a spokesman in the rattling truck remarked, interrupting the krew’s euphoric singing a little. True, even all the boulders strewn so randomly on the tarmac would not prevent a determined onslaught from an army task force.
“Let’s deal with this matter first,” chimed in another voice. “This will require flexing some muscle, lads and lassies, but I’m sure we can manage it.” Marta and the Maravillas, reconciled, revelling in the freedom they have so laboriously acquired, lend their muscle power.
The men in the back banged on the cab to get the driver’s attention and then directed him to a point where the railway tracks most closely approached the motorway. Then we all clambered off the truck and, by dint of superhuman effort, Sandy to the fore, the krew and the others helped shove a train wagon across the motorway to definitely block access to downtown. This amazing occurrence was confirmed by the famous press photo of the event: http://www.internationalist.org/boliviaaflame1003.html No bullshit – the Alto applies its stranglehold, after which Jim, as he predicted, now finds his position untenable and is forced to make his move and flee to Khazari regions, wherever those may be. Jim claimed that his mysterious contact from the semi-government organization VOID, the elusive Jan, had reappeared, bearing new instructions. Jim knows only too well that this messenger from VOID is truly a man to avoid, a manipulator, bringing with him only complications and that now was the moment to flee and make himself scarce.
A word, at this point, on Jim’s distinctive contribution to Goni’s downfall. He might claim that his presence at this time and place was mere coincidence. Others would contest this appraisal as Jim’s final attempt to downplay his vital influence in determining the outcome. There is more to this loop than meets the eye. Jim is certainly a key player, though nevertheless mysterious. Why was Jim so unsettled by the Void agent’s sudden reappearance? What assignment had been chosen for him? And where is this other dimension he so glibly refers to? Leading to a final question; where is he now?
Chapter 22: The Showdown/Flight
At last even the steadiest citizens of downtown La Paz saw that Goni’s future was inescapably decided, and they joined in the clamour of the Alteños and those who resided on the upper flanks of the city to ensure that the noose around Goni’s neck tightened. Each morning, grim, baying crowds congregated around San Francisco church, and staying beyond nightfall, defied the increasingly nervous troops who now were openly hesitating to add to the bloodshed already wrought.
Columns of protesters marched past the heavily guarded US embassy on their way to encircle the Presidential residence just below. Obviously the game of cat and mouse was over. Check mate loomed. Only a question of time until the mob managed to haul Goni from his lair and strung him up from a nearby lamppost, or even from the nearby statue of Confucius: “a good traveller leaves no track,” (Lao-Tzu).
The loyalty of the adjacent Military Police command was even called into question, but not the unconditional backing of Goni’s allies in Washington. So, for these supporters, the only unresolved issue consisted in how to achieve the disgraced president’s removal from Bolivian soil, quickly, efficiently, with maximum security and minimum fuss. At the last possible opportunity, an unmarked limousine tore out of the rear garage of the residency and sped towards the shelter of an isolated army camp in the deep south of the city from where a helicopter (with or without the daredevil Flying Fox at the controls – he having problems of his own right now) deposited Goni on a specially chartered fight to Miami.
The first reaction to Goni’s sudden departure, convening a street party to celebrate a popular victory, was soon tempered by a sense of humiliation that the miscreant had been permitted to escape so easily, tinged with profound mourning for the dead in the conflict. What should have occasioned a feeling of relief – now this episode is over, we can continue with our normal lives – instead confused the people. Normality receded to a distant horizon, to be replaced by the shambles of day-to-day reality.
Meanwhile our stalwart krew did recognize that the moment had arrived to take stock of their situation. Sandy, Geordie and Koff chose a quiet Chinese restaurant to plan their own retreat. But first, Koff insisted on an official launch of the Gringos Against Goni Society , treating his mates to an excellent bottle of French champagne in honour of the occasion.
“I wonder what Jim is up to,” remarked Geordie.
“Who knows,” the reply came back.
“A toast to Goni,” mockingly suggested Sandy. “I wonder how the tyrant is feeling right now.”
“Who cares,” the reply came back.
Chapter 23: the Windy, Stormy City
For the record, Goni eventually returned to his home city of Chicago where the forrnative years of his schooling and university career had been spent. There he was duly afforded the status of political asylum by the US government to protect him in what they considered to be his exile. The cover-up is complete despite some relentless hounding by the Gringos Against Goni club at every conceivable opportunity.
There are videos taken of Goni brooding on a park bench overlookng Lakeside Drive, but who can divine his thoughts? Given his known arrogance, one assumes that he is considering the ingratitude of the Bolivians, either that or he is lapsing into fits of madness like some latter day King Lear; his problem entirely.