08/12/2018 - SANTIAGO de CHILE
I had a pretty rough start in South America: while waiting for the bus to Argentina I got robbed! I always thought that something like that will not happen to me as I got some decent travel experience. Meh, I was totally wrong. Maybe I started being reckless. So thiefs operate in teams – one or two persons distract you and the other one gets your bag. I told myself several times not to let me distract by strangers. Well yeah … A woman sitting next to me suddenly pointed out that a bird just pooped on my shoulder. Yes there was something there and she pretended to help wiping it off. The next second my backpack was gone! I was so angry with myself, still am. But these guys are highly professional thiefs and, well, it ought to happen at some point in my travel biography. At least nobody put a gun on my head or kidnapped me … and I was lucky that I kept my passport and phone in my jacket. But credit cards, cash, camera (the big C’s) and some gear are gone. I was devastated and felt absolutely lost – in a country where authorities are no big help, where I don’t speak the language and where I don’t know anybody at all. But: several security people took good care of me, one of them bought me a new bus ticket as I was missing my bus, a person on the bus offered me water (as without money I couldn’t buy anything to drink nor to eat for the 8-hour-bustrip) and the Airbnb-host actually picked me up at the bus station in Mendoza and gave me money to buy some food. I take it as a lesson: first of all never ever get reckless while travelling. Always keep your money and cards somewhere safe, e.g. at your body. Never leave your personal belongings out of sight, never. Be suspicious, but don’t get paranoid. Generally people are good, there are always and everywhere some rotten apples. At least a poor Chilean family will probably have a nice Christmas now.
It is hard to keep up your self esteem after something like this happened.
But eventually I met up with friends and they definitely built me up and fixed me again – as did awesome others as well by accompanying me by Messenger and WhatsApp during the crappy first hours after it happened. Thank you! 💛💚💙