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Firstly, thanks for visiting my blog! Secondly, I should explain the logic behind the posts. Some posts I'm doing 'on the fly' while others are posts relating to past experiences. I'll try to title them accordingly or you can search using tags.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Crazy Peruvians Stole My Purse

We had our first Spanish lesson the other day and before our teacher left  she mentioned something about Peruvians practically invading Buenos Aires. We would have basically brushed off the comment but she persisted in telling us more about the evil Peruvians.

"It's not that Peruvians are bad people in general, it's just that they come here and steal from us and cause trouble; I had my purse stolen when I was walking down the street with my two kids, I hate them."

We're thinking, holy crap we need to watch out for these guys.

"What do Peruvians look like?" we asked.

"They are short, the have very dark skin and they are REALLY ugly. You would recognize them right away because they really are ugly." Below is a picture of your standard Peruvian at the beach.

(my brother Scott)

I was a little shocked at her comments but everything came to light; a few hours later when we took a walk in BsAs's downtown area. The so called 'Florida' street which is supposed to be 'so cool' in this city became part of our plans. For those who are from Ottawa, it's basically a Sparks street on crack; except many blocks longer, much wider and has curious looking people everywhere. Bottom line is that we didn't take any pictures because our eyes were peeled for Peruvians. It didn't take long before we found our first one... our Spanish teacher wasn't lying... damn UGLY and suspicious looking.

We decided to bail on Florida street because it wasn't living up to the wonderful memories of Khaosan Road in Thailand. The thing about Khaosan Road is that at least you don't know that pick pockets are eying you. We made our way back out to one of the main streets and started heading towards a famous cafe that he heard about (not before taking a wrong turn through a Peruvian nesting area... creepy!).

Now the sound of crazy drums beating, helicopters and people flocking in the same direction as us made us turn around once again. I have omitted at this point that we're pushing our 8.5 month old son in a stroller that can barely roll. I'm not afraid of large crowds but I'm not an idiot either; Argentinians are very fond of protesting! The speed at which the crowds were growing across a 9 lane highway were interesting.

We escaped just on time to avoid some huge crowds of people marching up the street. When we finally reached a quiet area we looked up just on time to see a women get her wallet stolen right out of her purse. The victim was an early 40s women sitting on a curb across the street (waiting for a bus or to meet someone). As she opened her purse this Peruvian comes out of nowhere and swipes her wallet out of her purse and takes off. We are frozen in amazement that this kid has the balls to do this in a wide open space. After ten 10 meters the Peruvian looks over his shoulder to see that no one is chasing him... he slows down to a jog with a smirk on his face. His victim sits back down on the curb and starts crying.

I could have easily caught him because he ran towards our side of the road but in a direction 45 degrees away from us; I could have blindsided him. Let's say that if  I was with my brother (see picture above) and not with my wife and baby, things might have happened differently for that little asshole. Not knowing what type of backup this kid had is another issue. So that's the story of our Peruvian encounter... hope you enjoyed! Make sure that if you visit any big city that you're not familiar with you take precautions against thieves!



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    1. Hey Laura,

      Thanks for the comment (I think). Sure it's a generalization that the thief was from Peru. If you want I could substitute the entire blog post with:

      Some ugly person, possibly an immigrant, possibly uneducated, skilled thief stole somebody's purse right in front of us; the very day after our Spanish instructor (a native of Buenos Aires) told us that there was problem with Peruvians in the area we were traveling in.

      ... but that would be boring.

      Great sociology lesson though... thanks.

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