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Europe Day 18 – Never go to Napoli

We stepped out of the train station and figured we could pick up some food and go to the beach. On our way to the kebab shop we walked through a bunch of people selling stuff. One guy was even offering a laptop. Lewis wanted to see how much it was. Just 200 bucks! Wow, it was probably stolen or broken right? Wrong.

I checked it out and it was a good computer. It was probably brand new even. He also said he’d throw in a 10 megapixel camera, sony, which was really nice and a video camera for a little more money.

Travel Tip: Don’t trust anyone in Naples. Actually, don’t even stop in Naples! Are you in Naples? GET THE @#$$ OUT OF NAPLES!!!!

Lewis said he’d give him 200 bucks for the bag of everything. 200 US, we thought he was getting a really good deal. I mean, intel core duo PC, nice camera with a 2GB card and a video camera. It all worked, the cables were there, it even came with a brand new copy of Vista. They had a really license and everything! The man gripped about the low price but finally stuck the whole thing in a plastic bag and tied it tight. Lewis figured it would be a slip knot and someone was going to come try to steal it.

He was wrong, we missed got back to the train station and since we were safe. Lewis pulled out his new bag and opened it up. Unfortunately the only thing inside of it was salt. Italian salt. 200 bucks worth I guess.

I went to get train tickets for Sicily, screw this town, and Gary and Lewis went to go try to find the guy. I sat with all the bags realizing how bad of an idea that was. Wondering if they would even come back. I started making plans for what I would do when they didn’t get back for the train. I had a whole contingency plan and they finally walked back in.

Lewis says

So we went back out to try and find this man that just ripped me off. We went back around the block to approach the street from a different side. As we got around the the block a man drove up on a scooter and tried to sell us again on the same scam. We recognized the man as being with the first scammer. He also recognized us at this point and tried to drive away. We grabbed his little moped and took the keys out of it so he could not run away. We told him to give us our money back right now. He then explained that it is every man for himself, and what one does the other has no control over. We didn’t believe him for a second and were about to take the electronics from this rather small guy when another man rode up and started to go kind of crazy. He was without a doubt the one that switched the bags. We saw him around us the whole time.

Apparently they had an extra key because we said we were going to the police and they both drove away. Then we walked back down the street to where we first met our scammer and there was an 70 year old man that approached us and started on the same scam. What a joke. This man soon found out who I was and tried to fight me. He charged me head on and tried to knock me over, and failed, but the scene drew attention and the people on the street seemed to be on his side, so we just left and went to the police.

Cool right? So before we left the train station we ran into some BYU professor of business. We told him our story as a good “Business trick.” He told us a better one is to rent a car to someone and then steal it while they’re asleep. That way you collect the insurance deductible and don’t ever tell the insurance company it was stolen! That was his current situation. So we left.

We hoped on a train to Sicily, cause you know what? Forget Napoli!

You think this is crazy? Just wait.

Posted Thursday, May 24, 2007