True Story©... The Big Payoff pt V

     Angel on my left shoulder, telling me “Phlip, don’t get on that plane.”
     Devil on my right shoulder, telling me “Phlip, get that money and get the fuck out.”
Internal tug-of-war, provide for my family in a manner that I had to learn to contribute to as a child, in a manner that I might have never imagined so easily attainable or stay here in the United States and drive this bag around and watch these companies shovel out all of the magical coal they might so need.  Pick your poison, Phillip.  Slow burn and hard work or hit this international lick and be straight one at a time.

     Why am I even second-guessing myself?  I KNEW I shouldn’t be on this fucking plane.  As opportunistic as I have been about trapping this cash over the past six months – I am at a million and a half now with my under-the-table museum contracts – I am still quite liberal as far as environmental issues go.  At least those in my own back yard, I feel something when I see my family and friends of my family with “No Coal Ash” signs in their front yards when I visited them in February.  That hasn’t stopped me though.  I guess we can say that makes me a hypocrite.
Oh yea, the plane!  I got on it.

     I swear, this felt like the longest damned flight I have EVER fucking been on.  It was kind of cramped too.  I was on a small private jet which had to stop to refuel twice on the way, and I was with the man who had called me on the phone, his partner and one security guy.  They seemed offended by the smell of my deodorant.  I was offended by their lack of it.

All told, it was an 18 hour flight and other than the overbearing smell of underarm, it was pretty uneventful.  They offered me food and drink, but I was not sure what they were offering me and I tend to not drink alcohol around people I am not comfortable falling asleep around.  We flew into the Europe side of Turkey and transitioned all of our contents to a large TEMSA bus.  I was impressed with the inside of this bus, to be totally honest.  I was not allowed to take it in for very long, as I would soon learn that major cities in Europe are not as far apart as they are in the States.  That said, we had reached our destination in like ninety minutes or so.

Bear in mind, I STILL don’t know what in the fuck country I am in, I don’t have my normal cell with me and I am lowkey terrified of what might actually happen in this place.  I am introduced to some cat who was described as what I would call an energy minister, who wanted to cut right to the damn chase.

Minister: “Look, we know why we are here.  A developing country needs coal.  The international arena apparently is not interested in seeing anyone who is not already great becoming great.  To do that, they have villainized coal and made it almost sinful to use it for power.  Well our need for you is simple.  You apparently have the key to unlimited coal and it is all off the grid.  Furthermore, the fact that it does not need to be mined leaves it more innocently-sourced.  It seems that you know this and have been selling for half of the market rate.  We would like to offer you what you ask and we will gather all we can between now and time to get you home to your loved ones.  We will collect and weigh what we can take right now and pay you based on the reading on the scale.  Is that a deal?”
Me: “Is pig pussy pork?”

I don’t think he understood that, but he laughed and then all his goons laughed.

     We were taken to the main power plant for the country.  Apparently the coal they bring in for it is dumbwaitered to the top of a giant-ass silo for storage, waited to be moved out on an conveyor to the furnaces.  We took this rickety elevator up to the top with the bag of coal.  Once there, two large men asked me for the bag, I handed it over, they went to the edge, each grabbed a corner of it and held it upside down into the opening.  Naturally, coal flowed from it but the bag never emptied.  Three of the other guys watching SWORE it was witchcraft and ran away as this happened.  In shifts, more men came and held the bag until their shoulders were sore.

     I watched as the silo filled before one of my hosts asked “you’ve had a long trip, surely you’d like something to eat and drink, perhaps a nap and maybe one of the finest women our country has to offer?”
“I am hungry and could go for something to drink, but remember that part about my woman murdering people?  Keep your women over there please.” came my response.

     While his men worked the bag, I was taken back to the bus, given some of the best food I had tasted in my life.  The women were beautiful but kept at bay as instructed for my personal safety.  After I ate, we got back on the bus and I dozed off.

     In what context clues tells me was about 90 minutes I was awakened with a rifle poking me in the ribs…
“get up!”
What the fucking fucking fucking fuck?!!?
These assholes had taken me back to the plane, now there are SIX rifles in my face and two people yelling me to get the fuck back on the jet.
“Where is my bag?” I asked, which was wryly responded to with “Bag? What bag?”
These motherfuckers dragged me out here to set me up.

     I tried like hell to get them to take me back to negotiate this thing.  I would let them keep what they had taken and never mention it again, so long as they let me keep the bag.
If I was brought back to that power plant, not only would I have been killed, but all six of these goons and their driver would be too…
“fuck that damn bag, just take me on home I guess.”

     I should have listened to me and not got on that fuckin’ plane in the first place.


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