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Check for your belongings on trains, too!

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A cautionary tale:

You know those ubiquitous announcements on planes we all ignore, like how to fasten your seat belt? And to check you have all your belongings before getting off? They have the same check for your belongings message on trains in northern Europe, but not in Spain, and seems they should.

I boarded the Barcelona to Vigo ALVIA in Pamplona early this afternoon. Wasn't sure I was in the right (Preferente) coach, and then on the floor by what I thought was my seat was a small over-stuffed shoulder bag and a Fodors guide to Barcelona.... I figured the person in the aisle seat had taken over the window seat while it was empty, and had gone for lunch. She couldn't have got off the train without her handbag, could she?

After a while it was clear she could and had. When the conductor eventually came back through I showed him an explanation on the Translate app on my phone, and he took custody of the bag and book. But my blood was running cold at the thought of what might be in it. (No, I didn't seriously think it was a bomb.) Camera? Phone? Money? Credit cards? ATM cards?? Passport???

I keep most of my valuables in a money belt, and I don't carry a handbag when I'm actually traveling - one rolling case and one day pack - but I made extra sure my iPad, phone and wallet were where they should be before I got off the train!

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