The first group I want to talk about are the security police that we call the boy scouts. For us that is not a derogatory term at all. They are so young. They look to be about explorer age but they are stationed on all major streets, on the corners and in the middle of the block. On our street Calle 100 there are 4 blocks between Carrea 15 and Carrea 11 where the streets don't come through. It is a 4 block strech with a couple of alley ways that allow walking traffic to get to the streets behind the main street. These young men are stationed all along the street on both sides. (There are 4-6 lanes of traffic and a bulivard strip of grass and trees between the two sides). On one corner there is a round about with 5 spokes and on the other corner there is a one way turn that goes south into the heart of the finanacial district. This is an extremely busy area and these young men serve as watchmen. This is not the only place they serve. They are all over the city and at various events. They direct traffic when traffic gets really snarled on the round about by us or in other parts of the city. They are always there if you get lost or need to find a store or something else. The middle shot that is blurry shows a whole group of them gathering before they go out to their various posts.
The two pictures below are of the regular police. They are a step up from the young men stationed on the street. They often patrol on motorcycles or cars and if there is an altercation they are the ones who come in to help the young guys.
The next shots are of the regular army troops. It is hard to get shots of these guys because they come out at night usually and take the place of the younger guys on the streets. They are also posted all along the streets and are within sight of each other. I don’t even notice them anymore. I have never seen a gun raised (except for the brinks truck guards). That is always a sight. The Brinks truck pulls up and there can be a hundred people on the street and out comes a guy with a silver sawed off shotgun pointed straight up but ready to be lowered. He moves quickly to the door of the building they are going to (the pedestrian traffic just kind of moves over for him and keeps going) and when he is in position a second guard gets out of the truck with a hand gun and accompanies a third guard carrying a bag to the where the first guard is. They leave another guard in the truck (also with a gun). Then they do the whole thing in reverse to get back to the truck. Someone has said that that is the way Brinks operates world wide. I just don’t ever remember seeing it before.
The last shots below are of a Peaceful demonstration that took place in the street by our office. The shots are taken from our office window. The government is trying to make cuts in the budget and one of the areas they wanted to cut was public school teachers health and benefits package. This protest was over that issue. There was lots of talking on the blow horn but no violence. It lasted about 4 hours. When we got ready to go to lunch we went out the back way.