We apologise for the break in diary service

Location India | Mood Deeply traumatised by events in Nigeria | Date 10 January 2007
Hello anyone who might be reading this. Sorry I haven't had a moment to get the diary entries from August to December up here.

This Crude idea might just work

Location Boat back from big women's protest | Mood Caged animals planning escape | Date 20 April 2006
Seem to have accidentally become some sort of focal point for the protesters. There's a constant stream of people coming for meetings at our hotel at all times of day and night - suspect it may be because Robinson is doling out free drinks with our money.

Only cash talks in Nigeria

Location Guarding gear in car park of yet another bank while Lizzie negotiates inside | Mood Light at end of tunnel | Date 21 April 2006
Very hard to get veggie food in Nigeria so the avocado and peanuts on stale

Childhood recurring nightmare comes true

Location Hotel room in Warri | Mood Really tired | Date 19 April 2006
Cold, hard custard and dry white bread for breakfast anyone? The plaintain is lovely.

Have we walked into a trap?

Location In chief's bed in village in heart of trouble area | Mood Surprisingly calm and clear-headed | Date 16 April 2006
Found our fourth Crude character yesterday. She is Layefa Malemi , a 22-year-old who has been fishing all day every day for the last two years to save up enough money to go to medical school so she can become a doctor and work in her village. She is quiet, calm, intelligent and funny. Absolutely perfect.

Hands in the air to "prove" you don't have weapons

Location In bed with Lizzie in hotel in Warri, Niger Delta. Not good idea to have separate rooms and the cockroaches have put her off another night on the floor. | Mood Angry | Date 16 April 2006
No weapons here

Flying over Nigeria's gas flares

Location Curiously carpeted bedroom, Port Harcourt, Niger Delta | Mood Nervous tension | Date 10 April 2006
Had a last-minute first taste of Nigeria at the visa office yesterday, where all paperwork is stamped with "this form is not for sale" and the visa man tried to sort a quick business deal - cash upfront - between us and his real or imaginary clubbing pals. (Our cover story being that we're on a mission to bring Nigerian house music to the UK, for our friend's (real) record label.)

How to tell if the AK47 pointed in your face is loaded

Location My ever-confused house, now doubling as military training centre | Mood Nervous tension bordering on hysteria | Date 5 April 2006
  After various friends and family calmly and touchingly and repeatedly asked me not to go to Nigeria, I thought the least I could do to take their concerns seriously was a Hostile Environments training course.