Sunday, May 25, 2008
The man at the hotel desk steered me towards a little place about five blocks away that was serving empanadas, and had bottled water and yogurt, so I've staved off death for another day. Church seems to have let out next door, and now very loud music is playing in the Plaza Bolivar; for about half an hour now it has been the same song, a sort of triumphant, bouncy rock song of some sort, apparently with a great many verses and a very catchy chorus. I'll be hearing it in my dreams tonight. At the climactic point of the song, the church started tolling its bell, which actually went quite well with the mood of the music, like the victorious ringing of freedom across the jubilant lands. Now a street vendor has starting ringing his bicycle bell, and the rock ballad has ended, and, bizarrely, the church seems to be playing Gregorian chant through a loudspeaker system. This is the most diversely noisy hotel room I have ever stayed in, and I've given you just a random sampling from one morning; I've also heard crazy people screaming in the plaza in the middle of the night, political rabble-rousers using megaphones, and once, what sounded like an explosion. Viva Caracas!