Don’t play brave when be­ing robbed

Global Times – Metro Beijing - - TWO CENTS - By Josie Zhang Page Edi­tor: chenxi­meng@glob­al­

Iwas robbed on my last night in Casablanca, Morocco. My friend and I fin­ished din­ing at Rick’s Café at 9 pm and hailed a taxi back to the ho­tel. It was quite nor­mal to see the front seat taken be­cause Moroc­cans like to car­pool, so we thought noth­ing of it and got into the car. We ex­pected to ar­rive at the ho­tel in 10 min­utes. We guessed wrong.

I started to get sus­pi­cious when the car headed to an area with empty streets and asked the driver what went wrong. He didn’t an­swer. Then he stopped the car all of a sud­den and the guy in the front seat got out. He took out a wa­ter­melon knife from the trunk and sat be­side us. We didn’t have time to run away. We re­al­ized that we were be­ing robbed but were too shocked to move.

I told the guy that he could take ev­ery­thing ex­cept our pass­port and ID cards. He was a lo­cal and didn’t quite un­der­stand me. He thought I was scream­ing for help, so he started to hit me. I got the mes­sage and quickly shut up. We were al­ready out of the town and had no clue where we were go­ing. But I still tried to fig­ure out how to get all my ID cards back. I pre­tended to cry to make the guy feel sorry for us and men­tioned the word ID sev­eral times. Fi­nally, he un-

der­stood what I was talk­ing about and agreed that we could have our IDs back. He started to give my friend her pass­port back but then changed his mind and threw her bag into the trunk. She didn’t have time to get any­thing. I looked at him with my teary eyes, and he got my bag for me. I took out my ID, my bank card and even my trans­porta­tion pass. Then I got my pass­port. I hid some US notes in­side it and showed him that I got my pass­port. I was ter­ri­fied that if he found out my trick, he would hit me again. Thank God he didn’t. They left us in a sub­ur­ban area and ran away. We hailed a bus and told the pas­sen­gers what hap­pened to us. They helped us find a po­lice sta­tion. The po­lice took us back to the ho­tel. It was the worst trav­el­ing ex­pe­ri­ence I ever had. But I learned some valu­able lessons. First, if you like to travel to ex­otic coun­tries, buy a proper travel in­surance pack­age be­fore you set out. If you get robbed, go to the lo­cal po­lice sta­tion and give a state­ment. Ask for an orig­i­nal copy of your state­ment as well be­cause it will be crit­i­cal for your in­surance claim form. Sec­ond, don’t try to play brave. Just sur­ren­der and give all the money to the rob­ber be­cause your life is more im­por­tant. Last but not least, I sug­gest that you dress to fit in when trav­el­ing in for­eign coun­tries and leave your pre­cious be­long­ings in the safe of your ho­tel.

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