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The smell of gunpowder curdles through the air as we swagger into a seedy bar in Colombia. Shady characters slouch at the tables, their cowboy moustaches twitching as they sip their beers. The crackle of explosives startles us as our fearless gang leader Andres Salcedo shoves the swing doors open and enters a large room. I cough in the acrid smoke and draw my weapon. I’m armed and dangerous and ready to compete in Tejo, the unofficial national game of this lively Latin American country. After a few beers and a plate of beef and beans, there’s nothing like playing with gunpowder to round off the evening. The idea is to lob a hefty round stone at six sachets of gunpowder balanced on an iron ring set in a bed of clay. A good shot smacks the sachet against the metal, causing an explosion. Several games are being played with bangs, flashes and flames filling the air as the inebriated crowd carries on late into the night. After a week in Colombia, I figure that Tejo is probably one of the...

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