Monday, June 29, 2009

In The Midst of Chaos

My first overseas assignment and my first coup. I'm way too old for this.

Of course, I know it's no laughing matter. It's sad when a government is so terribly corrupt. It's sadder when it looks like he will get away with holding a 'poll' of the people to see if he should run for an additional term when the country's constitution forbids it. It's a shame when his best friend is Hugo Chavez. So, the military did what it felt it needed to do to preserve Democracy. They gave him an early wake up this morning, arrested him and whisked him away to Costa Rica. Then they proceeded to name the president of the Congress as the new President and he will serve out the remaining 6 months of Zelaya's term. They state they have a signed resignation from Zelaya...Zelaya denies it...the plot thickens by the minute.

This morning, there were tanks in the streets, jets flying low, soldiers with menacing looking guns and of course, supporters of Mel Zelaya in the streets. I haven't heard of any violence. Wait..I did hear that the Ambassadors of Cuba and Nicaragua somehow managed to find themselves in the street somewhere, one of them with a few bruises. But that has yet to be confirmed. Sad.

Messages have been sent out over the emergency radios that all embassy people were to stay home. I've done that all day. I've had a few calls from my bosses, filling me in on what's happening, which is very little. The last call came a few minutes ago informing me of the good news that I was Essential Personnel and (the bad news) I would have to report to work tomorrow. Apparently, the embassy will function on a limited staff for the safety of all Americans and locally employed staff (LES). And a word about our LES...they are the best in the world!!

Who knows what tomorrow will bring. In my mind, Zelaya's supporters are gathering around the campfire and planning their strategy. Chavez has vowed to defend Zelaya's right to be president...and he has placed his troops on standby. This has all the makings of a Movie of the Week.

P.S. All information here has been taken from different news sites. You can go to, or any other news source and probably read even juicier and/or more up to date stuff than what I've written here.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Father's Day Suggestion

Father's Day is just around the corner. My father is 94 and for years I would try and come up with something special for him. A new sweater. A massager thingy. It was always hard to find something he would enjoy, knowing he already had everything. I then hit on the idea of giving him words from my heart. The first Father's Day Letter was thanking him for things that he did for me when I was young but never knew that a thank you would have been nice. It brought tears to his eyes. The next year, I wrote him about special memories as a child, times he made possible. Times that might not have been special at the time, but now are very special. Last year my annual letter to Dad was about the future. At 93, sometimes it's good to talk about what is still ahead. Like teaching his new grandson to play golf. Or to tell stories about how he ran bootleg when he was a teen. Well, maybe not that. My father has so many stories in his head...I wish he would be better about using the cassette recorder that was given to him to just talk into, recounting the adventures of his life. Years from now, his great grandsons would love to hear their great grandfather's voice. I know I will.
So, if you just don't want to give Dad another tie or bottle of aftershave, sit down at your computer and decide what you want to say to him. It's amazing...once you get started, it's hard to stop. I'm about to write my Father's Day message to my dad, tuck it in a card and mail it to him. He's in Texas, I'm in Honduras. A virtual hug will have to do until I get there later this year.
Love you Dad...Happy Father's Day.