This is going to be very hard to write for a number of reasons. On August 27th 2011 Alexander was arrested along with three other members of (apparently) his gang. He is, at this writing, in jail (where he probably belongs) in Chimaltenango. The four are charged with kidnapping Guatemalan women and rape. As you might imagine the fallout has been tremendous. Alex has been labelled as the "boss." Just two days prior to his arrest Alex's oldest son, Denis, achieved the best report card that he has ever had. Now the fourteen year old is quite simply, devastated, as are his sisters. Gladly the two little ones are too young to know or understand though, because of the news, they have been "suspended" from their pre-school out of safety concerns for the other children.
Whatever help that many gave to Alexander it was never enough and, quite obviously, it never would have been. Those who know him are shocked that he could be what he apparently is. Perhaps it is just not possible for a street kid to grow up in good order. It always surprised me that Alex was not (apparently) violent and not involved with either drugs or alcohol. It seemed to me that he had a gentle nature but that was the only side that I saw quite obviously. A very sad ending for a probably unwanted and uncared for infant born 35 years ago. Just three months ago he was strapping the youngest two into their seatbelts for a journey to the zoo and holding the hand of his youngest son. I guess I should have seen more into his disconnectedness from his children. There was a glimmer of caring about Jackie and Denis but obviously not enough. Astrid who will be 12 in November never seemed to care much for him and the youngest two call him "Alex." He called Denis the other night from his jail cell professing his innocence and saying that he needed money. He always needed money and now he probably really does but I don't know anyone who is going to give him any. It is a good thing that Denis had only very recently come to terms with the fact that his dad rarely spoke the truth. Likely a sociopath.
The challenge now will be to get the little ones back into school and to help the three older kids come to terms with who their father is. Gladly, in their world probably few have made the connection between them and the news reports which were many. Estela has already made contact with the local psychologist that is available to them and my Spanish is likely to get a real workout when I return to Antigua. New vocabulary words that I never expected to have to know. If the kids want to see their dad I will take them as no one else will. I would hope to see on his face all of the pain that he is causing his children. However, at the same time I realize that he never really had a chance. For so many this world is a really ugly place.