After talking with the police of Sant Cugat, we found out we were lucky on a couple of accounts. Actually, after the second time we talked with the police we found out we were lucky on a couple of accounts. The first time we talked with the police, the only thing we found out was that mastering level uno of Spanish is completely inadequate for filing a crime report. We may or may not have continued to pursue matters, but that night my wife received a call from someone saying that they had found her purse. My wife was thrilled and she told the person we lived in Sant Cugat and would like to pick it up. But, once again, level uno Spanish was insufficient to really understand what the person was saying. She left it that we would get a friend to call and make arrangements. I was less thrilled to hear about the call because I worried that these might be the same people who took the purse. They were in possession of my car keys ($220 to replace), and I worried that this was a scam to get our car (more than $220 to replace). We decided that it would be best to turn the matter over to the authorities. Luckily we have a very good friend who offered to come with us and serve as an interpreter.
We arrived at the police station the next morning after getting very little sleep. Every bump, clang, or creak had my wife sending me through the house to check things out. I would canvas the house with my cell phone out, already dialed to 092 (the Spanish 911 equivalent). We were fairly certain that the thieves didn’t have our exact address, but something about having my personal space violated made me feel less secure. This was especially true at night. About 3 in the morning, we finally gave up on sleep and watched Tom Hanks in the Terminal. I find good movies to be totally relaxing. As I worried about poor Tom being stuck in the airport for 9 months, I totally forgot about the army of gang members casing out our premises.
At the police station the first thing we found out was that this was not done by Spaniards. They told us this before they heard any of the details of the robbery. This has also been the reaction of every Spanish person who we have told. It is always the South Americans and probably a Peruvian. One friend even followed up by saying, “It’s like in
We also learned some more things at the station. When we told them that we had pulled over on the interstate because another car was indicating we had a problem, they looked at us like we had told them we had stuck our tongues to the frozen flag pole so that we could see what it was like. (It’s the why in the world would anyone do that look). The police went on to tell us that we were targeted because of our French license plate, once again emphasizing that no Spanish person would ever stop. We also learned that looking under the car is even worse. This is when they knock you unconscious and grab your wedding ring, watch, and wallet. Taking the whole car is not that uncommon either. All told it could have been much worse. My wife even had her credit card and driver’s license in her coat at the time.
I’ve included a picture of the police report below. I’m not sure it adds much, but I couldn’t think of any other picture to add for this entry.