Who needs a wallet anyway?

Posted: September 2, 2007 in Blog

This is sketchy, I thought to myself.

I was in line yesterday to get into one of the big tents at the goat races (yes, goat races– don’t worry I’ll post pictures and details soon) when it occurred to me that I was in a pick-pocket’s dream spot: Thousands of fairly well-to-do people, mostly ex-pats, in a crowded outdoor area.

No sooner had I put my hand on my back pocket, just to be safe, when security pushed the crowd back, which knocked my hand away as I stepped back. In those, oh, two seconds, my wallet was gone. You’ve got to admire the efficiency.

But beyond that, it’s mostly just one big pain in the butt. I only lost about 25,000 shillings ($15-ish), so life goes on. But I spent last night using Skype to call the banks about my cards:

Chris (shouting) to the bank rep on the phone: “I can only hear a few words you’re saying, so I’m only going to ask yes or no questions! When you answer, say yes six times, or no six times so I’ll at least hear it once! Can you send my cards to Uganda??”

Bank guy: *static* *silence* *static* “N-” *static “-o!” *white noise*

Well, that settles that.

It’ll get sorted out soon enough, but in the meantime I’ll be living off the Bank of Incredibly Generous Friends.

And thanks to Katie, who lost $175 US and her purse on her first night in Kampala, for offering some context. “You knew it had to happen, just depended on where and when,” she said, with a laugh.

$15 and a couple weeks of peanut butter-and-jam sandwiches? For a lesson learned, I’ll happily pay it.

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Comments
  1. Kevin Hill says:

    Hey Chris,
    your reporting / writing is outstanding.
    Keep up the great blog.

    …and sorry to hear about your wallet.

    Kevin.

  2. Matt says:

    Hey Chris,

    Ugh. That’s hilarious to hear how you had to cancel credit cards over Skype. I too have had to use the no-no-no-no-no-no and yes-yes-yes-yes-yes-yes approach. Although it wasn’t on Skype, I was in a video conference with a dean at the medical school this past year and I could barely hear what he was saying although he could make me out. I managed to convince him to hold long tones in order to say yes or no. Like, “mmmmmmmmmmmmmm” was yes and “eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee” was no. It was funny seeing this old guy do it. Haha!

    Anyways, bummer about the wallet, but it sounds like it wasn’t too big a deal. I love all the updates!

    Matt

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