Not just a day in the life…

December 2, 2007

8:30 AM Reports are that voting is light everywhere, pro-Chavez or pro-opposition.

12:00 AM I took spin around Caracas from one end to the other and it is better than people had told me but it is also a very mixed and somewhat confusing picture.

First I went to my voting center upper middle class and anti-Chavez and lines were not long but it would have taken me about half an hour to vote so I decided to postpone it. I then did a spin nearby and all seemed similar lines maybe 20-50 meters long in definitely pro-Chavez areas.

Then I went towards Petare along the Romulo Gallegos. Near Boleita a lower middle class area that tends to go slightly pro-Chavez (55-60% in his favor), there were longer lines maybe 100-200 meters in length.

Then came the surprises. I went to Petare, pro-Chavez territory and saw four schools, three had no lines whatsoever. In fact I almost missed one because it was empty and was able to park the car and take a picture in the middle of the road (below). The fourth one, by contrast, had the longest lien I saw today about three to four hundred meters.

Then I went the other extreme towards Caricuao, another pro-Chavez area and there were no lines anywhere.

Top left: Center in Petare, extreme East of Caracas, absolutely empty. Right: Center in Caricuao, armored truck and all, also absolutely empty.

I also saw empty centers in Avenida Urdaneta near downtown and Avenida Sucre towards the West.

Left: Instituto de Nuevas Profesiones between Dos Caminos and Boleita and Upel on the right near Boleita.

Left: I think this was Dos Caminos, bad picture taken through the window of the car. Right: Colegio Cervantes en Las Palmas with some lines about 20-50 meters long.

Left: I went this way to take a picture at this school where I took a picture with soldiers in line two years ago, but the street was blocked and the line was all the way down the street, about 200 meters. This is near the Ministry of Education in downtown Caracas, the street goes towards Avenida Baralt. Right: The guy with the motorcycle and the nuns with the shopping bags seem oblivious to the electoral event as a Chavez sign with scribbled No’s on it stands behind them.

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