Barcelona: A New Peril

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Jun 22nd, 2007, 10:00 AM
  #21
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here is why i called Lecaire, when she first arrove in Barcelona a sitting duck:

Leclaire wrote: "Anyways, in those cases I was unaware of my surroundings. I had my wallet in the front pocket of my backpack. That is stupid. Then the purse thing, well, I heard running steps before it was ripped from my shoulder, and did not think to grab my stuff, which is now a reaction for me when I hear running. The cell phone, well, I was reading my e-mail, answered it, and then put it in my jacket pocket, which was hanging on my chair. Again, really dumb. I am not saying those things were my fault, but I am now much more aware and can tell when something is about to happen"

would you not say that the naive new to Barcelona was a sitting duck? i think so and i think Leclaire would say so to and did as much in the quote above.
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Jun 22nd, 2007, 10:33 AM
  #22
 
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Pal,

anyone who "wanders aimlessly" into anything probably deserves to get run over.

Tell you what, when I'm in France in a couple of weeks I'll try not to wander aimlessly onto the tracks at Montparnasse 1 et 2.
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Jun 22nd, 2007, 10:37 AM
  #23
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yes duke but you know that if you wander aimlessly on the tracks you may get run over

first time tourists who wander around Barcelona don't realize perhaps that they can get run over and that's the difference - if they knew they probably would not just as you won't in Montparnasse because of your knowledge of the danger.

That said - did you take out Travel Insurance?
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Jun 22nd, 2007, 06:13 PM
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Barcelona: A New Peril

A typical pitfall of presumptive inaccurate reporting from thousands of miles away based on second hand sensational stories instead of real personal experience.
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Jun 25th, 2007, 01:08 AM
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maybe first-time tourists who come from an island with no roads nor footpaths, nor cyle lanes.

todor- eso es
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Jun 25th, 2007, 01:25 AM
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also palenQ: she would not call herself a sitting duck, just as i would not have called myself a sitting duck when i came here when I was 19.
Being a foreigner does not mean that you're inevitably going to get mugged or bag-snatched. That's just paranoid.

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Jun 25th, 2007, 07:28 AM
  #27
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<A typical pitfall of presumptive inaccurate reporting from thousands of miles away based on second hand sensational stories instead of real personal experience.>

actually the report was basically a series of interviews with real Barcelonians - they were the ones saying how dangerous they perceived the bikes to be.
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Jun 25th, 2007, 07:32 AM
  #28
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come to think of it the real Barcelonians above who pooh pooh the bike story - actually i think they are recently arrived foreigners - also pooh pooh the crime story, which cannot be pooh-poohed due to the many, many stories just on Fodor's from folks the unsavory incidents really happened to.

With that track record i might disregard their observations about anything in Barcelona.
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Jun 25th, 2007, 07:57 AM
  #29
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The folowing post by a savvy traveler illustrates just how naive some residents may be about their own city!

Author: Graziella5b
Date: 06/22/2007, 08:11 pm
We have been going to Spain for a looooonnnnngggg time, we thought we were invinsible, but things have obviously turned for the worst. In March of this year in Madrid we were robbed by some guys that I could swear they were Rumanians. They were several guys acting together, one blocks you from the front pretening he dropped something and the rest attack from the back and sides. No way out. As lincasanova said once they target you , forget it.
We visited several small towns in Castille, such us Tordesillas, everybody in town had a different story how they had been robbed in different ways by similar people......sad.
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Jun 25th, 2007, 07:58 AM
  #30
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<everybody in town had a different story how they had been robbed in different ways by similar people......sad.>

this is why i think it's a national shame for Spain to put up with this and perhaps a dip in tourists would help propel the authorities to do something about this crime epidemic against tourists.
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Jun 25th, 2007, 08:10 AM
  #31
 
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<A typical pitfall of presumptive inaccurate reporting from thousands of miles away based on second hand sensational stories instead of real personal experience.>

They probably took the 3 negative experiences out of a thousand positive ones to use to evoke "an issue" for a story.
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Jun 25th, 2007, 08:53 AM
  #32
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again i cannot be sure of the extent of the problem either. But one of the interviewees was the head of a Barclona pedestrian rights organization.
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Jun 25th, 2007, 09:50 AM
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And thus has an agenda, and a vested interest in making the bicycle v. pedestrian problem in Barcelona seem as serious as possible.
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Jun 25th, 2007, 09:58 AM
  #34
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yes could well be. Part of the problem is that new bike lanes in streets were so full of traffic that they had to use sidewalks - especially novice bikers, some of whom had never ridden a cycle before.

And apparently bike lanes were actually drawn on sidewalks in some locations.

The gist of the story was how successful the bike program was, not its danger, which i may be guilty of overhyping in my OP rather than dwelling on such a great program.
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Jun 26th, 2007, 01:58 AM
  #35
 
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""The gist of the story was how successful the bike program was, not its danger, which i may be guilty of overhyping in my OP""

I'm sorry, run that by again- you "MAY be guilty of overhyping" ???
Your title was BARCELONA- A NEW PERIL.

I think you need help, PalenQ.
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Jun 26th, 2007, 07:36 AM
  #36
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Help! Help! i'm crying out for help.

i'm not sure the new peril bit wasn't warranted.
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Jun 26th, 2007, 07:56 AM
  #37
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travel buzzing - please keep responding as it gives me another opportunity to highlight the situation - thanks to helping my crusade!
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Jun 26th, 2007, 10:02 AM
  #38
 
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travel_buzzing- who are you and how do I know you? Though I appreciate you not thinking me a sitting duck, I am having trouble figuring out who you are, and you have misspoken about me at least once (I have not read too thoroughly, but there is one obvious mistake). You know how to e-mail me, I assume. Do so.

As for this post, here is what I have for you:

Suspicions aside, this post was called to my attention because I was being mis-interpreted, so here goes:

One thing that you have to know in Barcelona is that you are always being watched. Seriously, in the past 2 times I have been robbed it has been in some kind of half-minute interim of not paying attention. On both occasions I was speaking English, though, and that definitely ups interest. So, essentially everyone is a "sitting duck," even if you think you are super aware and tough. People get drunk, people carry more than they should, people trust a situation. . . I am now resigned. If my bag is not physically touching my person and attached to my body, then it is game for thieves, and I am back to carrying as little as possible.

I am not going into the rest of the argument because the bike question is way more interesting. I am an avid biker and that is my main mode of transport. Here are my biker observations of the current situation here in BCN:

The bike lanes here suck. They are horrible. Not only are they poorly done (the ones on Diagonal run right next to the bus stops, and every time a bus unloads, hoards of pedestrians stumble into the bike lane to stand and get their bearings), but pedestrians are still not aware of them or choose to ignore them. When you ring your bell at them they actually get mad, as if moseying along in the bike lane were not only their right, but their reason for walking in the first place. There are very few continuous bike lanes, and many do not even have ramps to get up curbs, which is particularly hazardous to smaller bikes. I try to stick to the bike lanes when I can, but integrating with traffic is way better.

I rarely ride on sidewalks, and when I do, it is very slowly and if there are people, I will get off and walk. Some bikers are nuissances, but I actually think that pedestrians are much more of a bother. They are just unconscious, especially the tourists, and I am surprised that there are not more accidents. A few months ago I was riding down the Ramblas (on the street) and this guy just ran out (hopping the fence put in place to stop him from doing just that) and I only had time to slam on my breaks and yell "no" before hitting him. Luckily, my breaks were good and the collision was not serious, but when I asked him what the Hell he was thinking running out into the street he just shrugged.

Biking will get better as pedestrians realize that they should not be in the lanes, but that will take time. For now, I don't consider biking a new peril, but a fabulous solution. . . a healthy way to see the city and get around.
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Jun 26th, 2007, 10:31 AM
  #39
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laclaire: sincerely was not trying to denigrate you by using sitting duck but to show tourists who are lackadaisical as you were the two times you were robbed that they could be sitting ducks.

I meant absolutely no perjorative connotation. Sincerely, PalQ
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Jun 26th, 2007, 01:14 PM
  #40
 
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I, too, know laclaire, but I would like to clarify that she in fact lives in the Eixample, and to my knowledge has never lived in the Raval.

jejejejeejeje
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