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African American, Black Men, Community, International Exposure, Minority, Peace Corps, Travel, World

Listen to your gut feelings when traveling

I am still a very big believer on traveling and even traveling alone however this was just a big wake-up call that things like this can happen to the most avid traveling so never let your guard down when traveling in general and listen to the gut feelings that you have. Also, I thought this was worth sharing so people can be aware that there is good and bad everywhere in the world. I will choose to focus on the good but still be aware of the bad! Thank you for allowing me to share!

I always wonder if my super strength would come out if I ever got ambushed. Well, I am no super hero! I did put up a fight but the four men got the best of me. Strangling, punching and holding me down.

Beaten face side view

Right side of face

I really thought hard about sharing this because I am all about sharing positivism but it is needed to be shared so everyone can be reminded even though the world is a beautiful place we still have a few ignorant savage people in it. I trusted the wrong person thinking that I was going to get a personal tour of the museum and park but what I got was an ambush where four men ganged up on me, kidnapped me, brutalized me, held me hostage for over five hours and robbed me of my cash and used my credit cards to send themselves money via Western Union and PayPal.

Beaten Face Left Side

Left side of face

I would get punch in the face every time I would not say the correct thing to the operator or not type in my correct password. Believe me, I thought I was wiser since I have traveled to over 50 countries without an incident but I let my guard down this time. All the time during the ordeal I was praying internally that god put some sense and compassion into the heart of these men. At one point I thought that were going to kill me because they took all my clothes off and threw them to the other side of the room.

When allowed I even tried to talk about helping their communities and even brought up Peace Corps. They did not know what it was but after I explain what it was they hesitantly stopped punching me but one just kept treating to do so. After about five hours trying to get every money they could get from my cards they took out a receipt from my wallet and asked me where was this visa card that belong to the receipt. I told them that it was back at the hotel. So they were going to take me there so I could get it and withdraw money from it. They returned my clothes and kept my phone but returned my empty wallet, my peace corps pen, my drivers license and even one of the credit cards they used to do their Western Union transaction. One of them gave me some money to take the taxi back and said they would be following behind. The leader of the pack left first with my phone and money and told the other to hold me there for awhile. After awhile another walked me to the streets and took the money that was given to me and said just walk down the street we are watching you.  I wasn’t really sure what was happening now but just knew that know that I was out I had to just get back to the hotel.

Beaten Face II

Beaten Face Front

They threaten me not to tell anyone about this because they took pictures of my license and said they would tell the cops that I was selling cocaine and l doing illegal stuff. Yeah right! When I got far enough away I found the first taxi and asked him to take me to the hotel and I would pay him once there. From there I inform the hotel staff that I wanted to change rooms and to help me get to the police station to make my report.

Well, I am always looking for adventure but not like this. Also, I will not let this stop me from continuing my travels but I will definitely take Kenya off the list of returns any time soon. I will also push harder to find someone to travel with more of my trips. Side note at one point when I thought they were going to kill me I kept thinking what a bless life I lived. Well god felt that I still have some life and I will not argue with him about that. But truly I feel blessed, a little beaten but still blessed.

This situation at first made me think okay I’m going to sit my but at home and be a hermit but something kicked in me and said like HELL you will. This just mean that I will be working harder to save money and still try to live life to fullest because you just never know when your time might be up. I just hope dying is not so painful…please let me die in my sleep peacefully in another 40 to 50 years.

Until then thank you all for letting me share. It is helping a lot. I am not constantly angry anymore since the incident. PS the pics with the name is the name that came up on the Western Union receipt which I shared with the police.  I hope they get the guy!

One last thing is this can happen anywhere and to anyone but my story should not deter you from traveling or even traveling alone.  Just be aware of your surroundings and listen to your gut feelings.  Happy travels!

About Little Black Village

Little Black Village promotes higher education, personal development, and international exposure for African American youth. Little Black Village is a dedicated to discussing and exploring ways of keeping our black youth from dropping out of high school and encouraging them in seeking higher education and living up to their fullest potential. Little Black Village is also committed to making a difference in the black community by encouraging its members to share their voices through social media outlets, lead by example by taking an active role in mentoring a black youth, connecting families to educational resources and actively taking part of community services in and out of our communities.

Discussion

One thought on “Listen to your gut feelings when traveling

  1. Leslie, I am so incredibly sorry to read this story. Thank you for courageously sharing. I love you and am keeping you in my prayers!

    Posted by Bree | November 25, 2019, 6:26 am

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