Democracyâ€™s jet-lagged volunteers stumble out of Simon Bolivar international airport into the full glare of the Venezuelan sun. The two security men, locals employed by the mission, hurry us onto the waiting buses, eyes raking the space like Bren guns.
I remember the radio broadcast - three bodies found in the Channel, a yacht missing. But I only took a close interest a few days later when it was reported that accident investigators were examining the hull of the P&O ferry Pride of Bilbao.
'They put a gun to the back of my head. I heard them cock it. It jammed'
In the 1970s, idealistic young activists created a wave of experimental schools - no compulsory lessons, no timetables, no rules. So what happened to the kids who attended these free-for-alls?
Up close it looks like a normal, if rather high-powered, literary event. We're in the hall of the British Library. Mark Lawson is holding aloft a new book and chatting breezily to the thirtysomething celebrity author sitting alongside him.
I'm standing on a sunny playing field in a corner of post industrial Kent, trying to take in the fact that what I'm watching is a football revolution.