by Vonnie Davis
Safety is never guaranteed.
Not here at home or abroad.
Danger can, and does, lurk everywhere.
Calvin and I went to see Tom Hanks in his new movie "Captain Phillips" this afternoon. Talk about suspense. It was a well-crafted flick about an American ship traveling in international waters, hijacked by a small band of desperate, money-hungry men. A true story that captivated the news a few years ago. By movie's end I was trembling and crying right along with good ole Tom...er...Captain Phillips.
You see, I worry about terrorists...and criminals...and nut cases.
Any time Calvin and I travel abroad, a sense of fear niggles as I pack, a series of what-if scenarios playing on a continual loop through my mind. What if the plane crashes? What if we lose our passports? What if we get deathly ill? What if we're in a terrorist attack? What if we're mugged? What if...
So you can imagine what my state of mind was before our trip to Paris and Berlin last month.
Truthfully, there are less muggings there than in most cities in the States. But there are more incidents of pickpockets. So much so, that the rental agency through which we'd rented our Parisian apartment sent us an email a couple weeks prior to our trip, cautioning us to avoid places like the Metro and to not wear clothing that would identify us as Americans, like white sneakers or baggy jeans. I kind of snickered. Heavens, my pants haven't been baggy in years!
In response, Calvin decided we'd take taxis instead of the Metro for long distances across Paris. In this photo, this is as close as he'd get to the Metro, leaning against the entrance.
Remember the movie "The Bone Collector" where two unsuspecting travelers get in a taxi and the driver takes them someplace they don't want to go and locks the doors so they can't get out? And then kills them? Oh yeah, after Calvin's decision, that scenario ran through my mind like a rabid skunk.
So when the taxi we'd hailed outside of Galleries Lafayette, a high-end department store in an old opera house, took us to a part of Paris that resembled nothing of "our" neighborhood, I freaked. Heart pounding, I was ready to beat the driver over the head with the new purse I'd just purchased at the Galleries. Turns out he'd misunderstood rue Bertholett with rue Bertholo. Whew! I'd hate to have messed up my new bag.
Window at the apex of the roof of the old opera house, now Galleries Lafayette.
Visit me at Vintage Vonnie. www.vintagevonnie.blogspot.com