That’s what I felt as the National Police told me to get into the back of the police pick-up truck as I was being carted off to the local police station. I had been on my way to Awana (our ministry to kids) on Saturday afternoon. It is close to where we live so I take a bus each week. I did not take my wallet (which has my ID in it) in case I get robbed. The bus I got on was completely full which is rare for Saturday afternoon, so I had to stand next to the driver. Three blocks down the road there was a police check point, in which they enter the bus asking for IDs, I was the first one they came to and did not have my ID. I then got off the bus and sat under the overpass with the rest of those who dare to leave their homes without ID. I was able to call Sarah to meet me at the police station with my ID.
We boarded the pick-ups in groups of 5. The officer, who sat guard over us, yelled at us a good bit in Guarani, I don’t speak Guarani, but I’m sure he was not asking us if we were comfortable. The “clown” next to me is throwing “shout outs” to his friends in the street, I’m sure he received so police brutality late that day. We were told we would be held for 5 hours there at the station, even after our IDs are dropped off. I knew I did not want to spend the next 5 hours there, especially after I saw the holding cell.
We sat in a courtyard while they took down our information. From where I was sitting I had a good view of our future cell mate. He had woken up with all the commotion, and was very interested in why we were there, he then when on to freshen up his cell and himself with some Glade. His cell was all of 4x6ft so I was pretty sure that we would not be with him.
I was counting on Sarah’s very pregnant stomach, two kids and good behavior for an early release with time served. But she sent our Field Director, who is less charming and not pregnant. But it all worked just find, before they had time to put into action their devious 5 hour plan, I was walking out the doors. Thanks Bob!
So lesson learned, always have your ID on you when in Paraguay.