Thursday, December 21, 2006

Merry Christmas メリークリスマス



Hey everybody, what's your christmas present for this year?
I have bought myself the very popular PS3 and Wii...


And for some children less fortunate I have bought a little present for one of them.. I participated in one of the company program for buying christmas gift for some of the children living in orphanage. It's really difficult to find something nice in a small budget so I hope the kid that receive my gift will like the watch.......




イタリアに着いた二日目Monrealeっていう町に行ってきました。 シシリアの一番大きな町はPalermoにいて、Monreale はPalermo からバスで30分です。

英語系ですごく評判よくのガイドブック「Lonely Planet」を使っていました。残念ながら日本語のガイドブックでシシリアだけのものありません。そこに書いてあったのは「Monreale行きのバススリがすごく多いです。」 へええええ! 大丈夫かな、あのバス?ってすごく考えた。 タクシー行くと30~40くらいユーロかかるから、 結局思い切ってバス乗ることにしました。

10:00時くらいのバスに乗るから、9:45くらいバス停に着いた。 バス停っていうけど、 道の一角で人が集まっているところだけ。 そこに50代の日本人夫婦がいて、 声かけられた。 「大学生ですか?」って?! (私大学生みたいの??) ちょっと喋ってた。 イタリア人が結構多かったから、 周りの様子を見てて、 バスを待っていた。

バスが来る瞬間に3人のイタリア人が来ました。 あの日本人のおじさんがバスに乗ったところ、 おかしいこと起こってしまいました。 急に誰も動かなく、 おじさんが3人のイタリア人に囲まれた・・・ ほかの人が見るだけで、 だれも助かっていなかった。 運がよくかもしれないが、 何も取られてなかったが、 すごく怖かった・・・ 泥棒と5分くらい一緒にバス乗っていた、 そのときの考えは「次は私かもしれない」・・・


  1. お金は服のなか(マネーベルト)によく隠してください。
  2. 自分で運転するか、タクシーを乗るか
  3. 一人でシシリア行かないこと
  4. でもたぶんPalermo行かないほうがいい

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Robbery in Sicily

The 2nd day I was in Palermo of Sicily. I took a bus to the town Monreale. It's about 30 mins away from Palermo and have a beautiful church with exquisite motif.

In the guidebook I used (Lonely planet in this case), it has explicitly written "Pickpocket is notorious on this bus". The other way would be to take a taxi but it will probably cost about 30-40 euros vs 1 euro by bus. After some deep thinking I still decided to take the chance and take the bus.

The bus stop is not really a bus stop but just a place where a dozen people standing at a corner of the street. There are a dozen local folks and about the same number of tourist. There were two Japanese in their fifty that took the bus with me. I was mistaken as a Japanese and we chatted for a while. I stay cautious and move around whenever somebody come close.

Just when the bus came, 3 Italians arrived. In a split of second when the Japanese tourist and I boarded the bus, I realized something was wrong - nobody is moving on my left side. The Japanese tourist was blocked by the 3 Italians. He was struggling and it seems somebody has their hands all over his waist. It went on for about 2 minutes before he "escaped" and come close to his wife and me. Nobody helped or even said a single word. I am sure the bus driver noticed it but he didn't do anything.

Luckily nothing was taken as he was warned before he came that this bus has pickpocket. He probably has his wallet hided somewhere... If they were not there I think I might be the victim!

Lesson learned:
  1. Use a money purse and hide it somewhere inside your body
  2. Drive or take a taxi
  3. Probably not a good idea to go alone in Sicily...