Journal, October 30, 1976 AM

Today is Halloween in the U.S., but they don’t celebrate that one here.

I’ve already been to see the rector {University chancellor or president} and dentist this morning. He struck a nerve in one drilling this morning, so today I’ll refrain from singing his virtues.

We had an office party yesterday. It was Joaquin Rodeno’s birthday and I don’t know what else, but it was quite a do. We began with pizza and a birthday cake at lunch hour, and then, after work, we had a real party at Joaquin’s family’s place on Lake Ilopango. (He’s from a rich family with a place on every major beach & lake in the country.) Mike {Shank} and I went early with the food and beer, and had time to smoke a joint (with Joaquin & Oscar Nuñez) and take a swim before anyone else arrived.

Sandra, the secretary, was in her glory at this party. When she started dancing there was no letup. The image of her trying to throw her small, well-formed breasts from side to side like a strip teaser lingers in my brain. As Mike put it, she is so reserved in the office that it really takes you aback to see her let go. She’s got the impishly sweet looks, bravado and vulnerability of a sixteen-year-old.

Francisco Avalos explained to me why the agrarian reform in El Salvador failed. He claims the crucial factor is that the industrial elite and the agrarian elite in this little country are the same people (or at least the same families). An independent industrial elite might back a reform as a road to increased internal demand for their products. But here, says Francisco, only the multinational companies with factories here (mostly U.S. corporations) stood to gain. {Salvadoran President} Molina tried, but only proved you can’t carry out a sweeping agrarian reform when your government is so dependent upon the landed class.

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