I had never really talked about this, it was only last week that I broke down and told my husband this story.
Like most weekends in Venezuela, you go to the beach with your friends. I was picked up by a group of friends, none went to the same school. My Father knew one as he was the son of a businessman. There was a bodyguard who was driving, my father thought it was pretty safe. Going to the beach was a fun excursion, music, bbq and sun.
The morning sun was intoxicating, we hung out, played football on the beach, took a nap, and then figured we needed to get some food.
We gathered our things, and got into the car. We backed out, and heard a loud pop pop.
The bodyguard/driver, told us to get our heads down, my friend Philippe, pushed my head down, and held my waste. All I heard was glass breaking, and gunfire. It took me a few minutes to realize the gunfire was aimed at us.
The driver, must have gone up on the curb, was going in and out of traffic. We were swaying back and forth. Full sun was beating down on our backs as we had our heads down, holding onto our thoughts.
Philippe began to recite the lord’s prayer. I had no idea why, but I kept thinking it sounded odd. He recited it in 4 different languages. The bodyguard kept telling us to keep our heads down. We were sweaty, and I began to vomit on the floor. I couldn’t cry, I just stayed in that awkward position. Philippe, began rubbing my back, I turned my head, he had tears in his eyes. We couldn’t comprehend why anyone was shooting at us, but we figured, we must be all pretty good targets, the mix bunch of diplomatic kids, banker’s kids, and proctor and gamble kids.
The bodyguard had been gunning it, moving in and out of traffic, using every bit of illegal driving maneuver to get us back into Caracas and behind a gate.
We finally arrived at our friends house. All of us having vomited all over the back and the front of the car. we realized 2 of the side windows were broken, and we had been riding on a messed up rims. My friend’s father came running out, telling us to get in the house, and cleaned up.
I was told to keep the shooting a secret, to not tell my Father, and to promise, never to go to the beach again.
I never told my Father, not even on his death bead. I never went back to the beach again, it was too terrifying. We never spoke about it again, and to this day, I have no idea what happened to my friends. We lost touch.