Attempt One: Denied

14 07 2008

Posted by: Chris and Laura

Travel date: 5.02.08

Laura: In Buenos Aires, we decided to stay in the area of San Telmo in a hostel which just happened to be located around the corner from our steak restaurant. One night we were sitting in the main room. I was watching Law and Order on TV, and Chris was using the wifi on the Nokia palm pilot.  Both of us were relaxing on the couches wearing pajamas.  In all of the hostels in Buenos Aires you push a buzzer and reception will let you in. So I didn’t even notice a man who was buzzed in, walked directly under the TV I was watching, then went up to the desk. I only noticed him after he finished talking to the girl, then walked up to Chris and pointed at the palm pilot.  I wasn’t sure what he was saying to Chris, but I was immediatly nervous. Suddenly, I saw Chris’ foot planted in the guy’s stomach as he was pushed back more than a few feet. Chris quickly jumped to his feet and the two men stared at each other for a split second until the guy turned and ran out of the hostel with Chris following closely behind him and actually managing to slam the robber’s hand in the door as he ran out. He had to have broken at least a few fingers. Chris contemplated chasing him down the street. But the guy hadn’t actually taken anything (we didn’t find out until later he had robbed the register) and Chris was only wearing his socks.

Chris: Kids, here’s a tip: if you try and rob someone, either use a real gun or make sure they speak your language.  “Bluffing” a weapon to someone who can’t understand you is a bad idea.  We didn’t know what was going on until after we talked to the woman at the front desk.  She buzzed the guy in and didn’t make a sound the whole time he was talking to her.  Turns out he told her he had a gun in his pocket and took the all the hostel’s money, then of course, walked up to me and asked for my gadget.  Since I didn’t have the slightest clue what he was saying I just stared back at him, blankly.  Until he tried to grab the Nokia out of my hands.  Lesson 2 kids: physically lunging at another guy or–God help you–his toy gadget, is a bad idea.  You couldn’t pry a gummy bear dipped in baby oil out of my hands.  Most confusing was the woman working at the front desk, who remained silent after the guy ran off.  We still weren’t exactly sure what had happened until she broke down and started crying.   The owner and other employees came rushing over and they finally explained everything.

But as I stood there in the doorway debating whether or not to go running after the guy, I turned around to find Laura right behind me with her pepper spray in hand.  And while I had to tell her that the next time her instinct should be to get the hell out of the way, I admit I was pretty damn proud of her.  She looks sweet, but lesson 3 kids: women are crazy.

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