I have decided to reblog this as Philippine Esquire Magazine has published sections from it. Some people might want to read the full story as I wrote it at the time. Also, the fact that the current Pontiff, Pope Francis, is currently in the Philippines makes it newsworthy. I hope you enjoy it.
My second visit to Bilibid Prison was under very different circumstances. In fact the day following my second visit one of the Manila papers referred to it under a typical tabloid headline: “Balloons and Bibingka for Benjamin’s Birthday.”
My friendship with the Bolivian surreal artist, Benjamin Mendoza, began in 1969. By that time I considered myself an old Manila hand, regarded by many locals as an honorary Filipina and by the Indios Bravos crowd a resident fixture of the cafe. Benjamin Mendoza was the new guy in town. As…
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