Hmmm..so I’ve been checking out the temporary hood in Barcelona (El Raval to be exact) [now that I’ve got the apartamento booked] and I’ve run into some warnings about petty crime. Pickpockets! Muggings! Snatching backpacks in broad daylight. Yikes! Apparently, my desired area is “gentrifying” and is described as a little “seedy”. This is what I get for googling.
The good thing about me is that I’m adventurous and rarely do I check reviews or google stuff to find out ahead of time what it will be like. But on the bad side, when I do go surfing for external validation (Google) sometimes I don’t know how to handle the response.
I’m decided not to panic and to work with my new environment. You gotta roll with life. I can work with “seedy”. Its a battle of wills as to who can be more sly. I’ve decided to bring some hypothetical flowers. My “flowers” will be my defence mechanisms against the crime. Sunflowers! My favourite.
- Photograph passport and leave original locked in apartamento
- Hide cash everywhere
- Only carry small amounts
- Find that secret “shoe” compartment (and wear cheap shoes)
- No jewelry (not a problem for me, I’m a minimal jewelry wearer
- Do not look like a tourist (no bright colours, Europeans like dark colours)
- Practice that Spanish! “No, gracias”!
- Confidence, practice looking street worthy
- No backpacks in public
- Shoulder strap purse with double zip pouch
- No more selfie shots in crowded areas
- Purse in lap in restaurants at all times never on the back of the chair
Pick Pocket Proof clothing (I found this site and there is clothing for women and men who need help to keep safe on their travels. Excellent! Highly recommend for fellows and ladies too!)
Besides, what’s a little crime to see one of the most intriguing cities in the world and this is my second trip to Spain and I did ok the first time in crime ridden Sevilla and stayed out late into the night with the lovely crowds of Sevillanos. Zara, here I come to buy some Spanish clothes and flow into the crowd.
I guess that means I’ve gotta dress it up a bit :).