Travelling in Europe recently, I was hyper-vigilant about pickpockets. As usual when on the road, I kept my passport, extra cash, and credit cards in a moneybelt. Guidebooks (and common sense) tell you not to put your wallet in your back pocket, to watch your purse on crowded buses, and to lock your luggage down on overnight trains. One guidebook even warns you not to leave your cellphone on the counter in Italy when you order an espresso lest somebody swipe it.
Then I returned to Vancouver, and vigilance went out the window. My wallet got tucked back into its usual place in a jacket pocket, my iPhone dropped into an easily accessible flap on the outside of my bag. Recently, I’ve been tucking it in my back pocket”¦
It took a couple days to adjust back to being this lax. Several times I wondered if I have a false sense of security: there aren’t pickpockets in Vancouver, are there? I recall seeing some warning signs during the Olympics, but I kind of figured that was precautionary, or that it was just a high-risk period. I’ve been living here most of my life, and I’ve never heard of anybody being pickpocketed.
A good friend posted on Facebook that her offspring was pickpocketed at Granville Skytrain station. So now I’m wondering: was this an isolated incident? I'm not naive enough to believe that pickpocketing never happens in Vancouver, but how common is it? How lax or vigilant are you about preventing it?
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