If you follow me on Facebook, you know that I got robbed in Antananarivo. Here is my Facebook update:
Just got violently robbed here in Madagascar… I knew that Tana is a dangerous city and that’s why I didn’t carry a lot of things with me. I had only a little bit of cash and my iPhone in my bag. I was walking on a busy street during the daytime when it happened. The guy just grabbed my bag, pulled me down to the ground, and because the bag was slung across my body, he started dragging me down the street. It happened so fast that I didn’t have time to react. He got the bag and started running up the hill. My knees and elbows were bleeding, but I started to run after him. I ran up the hill but he was too fast, and I lost him. There was one guy who was trying to help me, but he got punched in the face. We went together to the police to file a report. Now I’m planning to fly to South Africa to buy a new phone… I was planning to come back here anyway when it’s not a rainy season, and they open some of the national parks, but I wasn’t planning to leave so quickly…
I’m happy to be alive. My knees and elbows are hurt, but they will get better. I’m also grateful for the guy who tried to help me and then got punched in the face. I’m so sorry that he got hurt, and just can’t think him enough.
The funny thing is that I was somehow expecting to get robbed. I carefully selected the things I was going to take with me, and I only took a little bit of cash and my phone with me. Somehow I was also expecting to lose my bag when I was traveling from Bahrain to Comoros, and I packed more things in my carry-on. I should listen to my instincts more.
I’ve always said that if I ever get robbed, it will happen violently. I always take such a good care of my belongings, and I’m cautious of my surroundings. But bad things do happen. There was nothing I could have done differently. It wasn’t dark, it wasn’t a dangerous area, I was walking on a busy street, and there were other people around me. I only had a small bag with me, and I had left almost everything valuable in my hostel.
So far Madagascar has been a big fail. On my first day here, I heard that some of the national parks (like Tsingy) are closed during the rainy season. Then two days after that I experienced the biggest earthquake of my life. I woke at in the middle of the night when my bed was shaking. The next day I read from the news that it was an earthquake of magnitude 5,6. And then this happened, I got robbed.
I had already made plans to fly back here after the rainy season. I was still planning to travel here a bit, though, and then fly to Mauritius, but after this incident, I might need to fly to South Africa where I can buy a new iPhone. I’m just searching for flights, and I’ll fly there tomorrow.