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Kovaks Street Scam Forums • View topic - The Rose Scam & The Pigeon Poop Scam

The Rose Scam & The Pigeon Poop Scam

Scammed in Barcelona? Share your stories here.

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The Rose Scam & The Pigeon Poop Scam

Postby KOVAKS on Wed Sep 17, 2008 11:54 am

Contributed by Marty Fufkin:

I lived in Barcelona for two years as a missionary for the LDS (Mormon) church. I really loved the city and the people and when my two years were up, my parents came over to tour Catalonia. I had written for two years telling them how great Spain was, especially the low amounts of crime. During my mission, I hadn't seen any type of crime or scam, except the shell game, which I think most people are wise to. Anyway, when my parents came I was very disappointed with two scams that came happened while I was with my parents. The first happened at the Sagrada Familia. Just outside the magnificent building, a large Gitana (Gypsy) woman was pinning flowers on the shirts of tourists. She would then ask the person for "cinco duros" or twenty-five pesetas. As the person would reach into their wallet, the woman would quickly grab whatever cash appeared, not "cinco duros" but a bill of one-thousand pesetas. As this woman tried this on my father, I quickly intervened and told her in plain spanish to leave him alone. She was startled that a tall american could speak spanish and know the scam.

The second scam is even worse for the tourist. As I was walking with my parents along an escalator near the Olympic Stadium, a man either spit or threw lotion on my jacket. He tried to tell me in broken english that a pigeon had crapped on me. The man had a kleenex tissue and kindly offered to clean it off. I knew this was a scam and I told him in spanish to keep his distance. I knew that if I took off my jacket, he would reach into my pockets and steal my wallet. He, like the Gitana, was again shocked and surprised and quickly left just as two Guardia Civil officers drove by. I informed them of what happened, but by this time the man was long gone. I was very upset that this happened, especially while my parents were visiting. It seems like these predators were targeting tourists, and unfortunately were having great success.
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