Dr. Katinka's practice


Suddenly they were standing behind us, as if from nowhere. Three young men, partly masked and armed with knives. One grabbed Gaby by the neck, the other threatened her with a knife. The third attacked me and pulled me to the ground. We were walking on the way, from Mindelo to Salamansa, to a beach and wanted to go swimming there. A neighboring crew took this path a day earlier and also met a family with children there. Although one must always expect something like this in Cape Verde, we are shocked and surprised by the brutality and determination with which the attackers proceed. Without consideration for losses they take everything from us, which we carry with us. They keep me at a distance by throwing stones at me. While I take up the chase in spite of everything, Gaby runs back to inform the police. I lose sight of the gang for a moment, only to discover them again seconds later and take the new direction. In a dry creek bed I find our backpack again. The credit cards and passports scattered on the ground. I quickly collect everything and resume the pursuit. In the meantime, the three have separated. I see two of them again briefly until they too have disappeared. I go to meet Gaby and meet her with two construction workers who had rushed to her aid. One of them calls the police, who come with two patrol cars and search the area. I recognize one of the perpetrators from a mug shot. Unfortunately, they are long gone. In the end, they got the cash and the cell phones. All in all, I was lucky once again. The incident is recorded and we get a number. That should be it.

We are fine

But now the problem really starts. On the cell phone are the accesses for our bank accounts. Everything is double- and triple-secured. However, this also applies to a new account and communication with the bank. The app is quickly installed on a tablet, only the access code is sent to the cell phone, which is no longer in my possession. Emailing is also not possible, only a phone number in Germany is given on the homepage. "In the event of theft, please contact our service staff in confidence, they will help you quickly." But what if your cell phone is stolen? Exactly the same with my favorite provider Vodafone. You can only block a SIM card if you order a new one at the same time. But you have to receive it personally in Germany. A contract cancellation can only be done by phone. We are thrilled and ask ourselves which criminals are actually worse, those on Cape Verde or those who manage our money. The excuse then is, "It's all for their own safety." However, this also helps the thieves to make off with the loot. Oh yes, there is also the possibility of tracking the cell phone. Yes, there is the possibility, if the cell phone dials into a German radio network or is connected to the Internet. This will probably be both rather unlikely, since on Cape Verde, no German radio network is available and the dial-up to the Internet, with the existing SIM card, from the mob, probably not made manually. So to 90% write off. The remaining 10% are maintained by friends through various channels, who have heard of a recovery, at least once before.
The last aspect of this incident is psychological. Apart from a few abrasions, we got nothing. But the psyche of a person is firstly different and secondly unpredictable. After the adrenaline in the body has subsided again, self-doubt arises. Did you do everything right in the situation? Should one perhaps have been much more aggressive after all? Although common sense says that in this situation, without seriously injuring someone, more would not have been possible, these self-doubts remain. If in the immediate danger, the fear has moved far into the background, it comes back enormously now, at night, when the body comes to rest and the wounds begin to hurt. Every noise makes you jump up and the body starts to become sensitive to cold and begins to tremble. There are phases when you just want to start crying, even though there is no reason to do so. Mistrust spreads and one becomes unfair to people who really have nothing to do with it and who are friendly from the ground up. In order not to condemn everyone and everything, we work hard on these doubts and mistrust. A lot of talking and standing together helps us, hopefully quickly, to get over what we have experienced. In any case, we will still have to nibble on it for a while. With photos it is unfortunately also scarce, since these disappeared with the cell phone. The last backup was a week ago. We will continue in any case and hope that you will remain loyal to us and that we can win one or two new members. In this context we would like to remind you to subscribe to the blog, because WhatsApp and Co. will be down for some time. We wish you all the best, stay healthy and keep a stiff upper lip.