(This post was originally posted on Ms Sparky on May 20, 2008. I moved it to Blue Behind Bars when I separated my personal blog from my political blog.)
When Cal and I were working in Baghdad we took the opportunity to take our R&R’s in places we had always wanted to visit. We spent our first R&R in Cairo, Egypt riding camels and exploring the pyramids at Giza. We had decided we were going to spend our next R&R in Phuket, Thailand. When Phuket was hit by a devastating tsunami in December 2004, we decided to go to Istanbul, Turkey instead.
Istanbul (aka Constantinople) is a very old and beautiful city. There are an abundance of attractions such as The Topkapi Palace, The Hagia Sophia, The Blue Mosque, The Grande Bazaar, The Spice Market and The Orient Express to name only a few. The museum at Topkapi Palace was my favorite. It is the home of the Spoonmaker Diamond (aka The Kasikci Diamond). A single 86 carat stone surrounded by 49 individual stones (see photo) That would look soooo good on my finger!!
Unfortunately, Istanbul is also the pickpocket capital of the world. Read more
(This post was originally posted on Ms Sparky on May 21, 2008. I moved it to Blue Behind Bars when I separated my personal blog from my political blog.)
Continued from “I Got Mugged In Istanbul-Part 1-See Below
Fortunately, Cal had enough taxi fare to get us back to our hotel where there was an internet cafe. I needed to contact Wells Fargo Bank so I logged into my Wells Fargo account. I checked my accounts and and after several tries was able to contact Wells Fargo via the “International Number” and cancel my cards. It would appear I had acted quickly enough and had averted any potential damage to my accounts. So I thought.
I then contacted the US Consulate. I was so afraid I was going to be stuck in Istanbul for weeks without a passport. But, do to the large number of US Citizens needing replacement passports, the US Consulate in Istanbul is one of the few in the world that can make you a temporary passport “while you wait”.
I didn’t sleep well that night. I just replayed the mugging over and over in my head. What could I have done differently? How could I have prevented this? Why was I targeted? Who knows, but being the victim of anything is just not OK with me.
The next morning we headed out bright and early to the US Consulate across town. There was a shop owner right across the street that took passport photos….how convenient. Read more