BARCELONA - oh how I want to love you....

BARCELONA - oh how I want to love you....

But I don't - at the moment.

We arrived at the Barcelona airport via Ryan's Air from Morocco. It was late in the evening, and we decided that we needed a coffee as we figured out how to get to our Airbnb.

You have a reputation Barcelona - not a good one. Gypsies, tramps and thieves. Which we were aware of....but you still got us!

We had selected seats that were far removed from anyone else's and set our two small backpacks (we WERE travelling Ryanair after all) on the chair beside me. Hubby went to get the coffee, and I pulled out the map. I know, I know - a sure sign you're a tourist. Of course, being in the airport kind of gives that away anyway.

We were tired and confused about our route, and we made the fatal mistake of getting distracted.

I thought hubby was kidding when we got up to go and "he said, where is my backpack?" I wasn't immediately stressed. After all, it was just clothing. Replaceable.

And then I remembered. My DLSR camera, the memory and equipment were in his bag! We had put it all in hubby's backpack as it fit best there.

I realized quickly that I didn't really care about the camera. It was insured.

This was a while ago now, and Morocco's internet was sluggish, and people weren't using the cloud. I had not had the opportunity to back up my photos, and I wasn't carrying the memory cards on me. Also, we had been in Amsterdam and Paris before that - and those pictures were now gone too.

We ran to the information desk, and the three ladies there, I am sad to say, were less than helpful.

We learned there was a Spanish police station in the airport in a section of the airport that felt like hours away. We ran to them, and the lovely Policia WERE helpful. The language was a bit of an issue, but once they understood, they checked their CCTV. They were able to show us the weasel sneaking up behind us and grabbing the bag. They put the word out and even had someone stopped on the train - but that was the wrong person. They were quite sympathetic to our plight but were unable to do much other than giving us a police report.

I was heartsick. I knew about Barcelona, I knew that I should carry my cards on me and to back up my images. But I let my guard down. It was a hard lesson to learn.

We arrived very late at the flamenco bar where we were to pick up the keys for our Airbnb and in the bathroom were warning signs about theft in the area.

We only had two days in Barcelona before we were heading to the coast, so we spent most of those two days replacing items of clothing.

I did find a website that I was hopeful might get my images back. It's called CameraFound, and if you have lost your camera or memory, you can register your metadata with them, and they notify you if it turns up. As well, if you find a camera or memory, you can upload a few photos and information as to where and when you found it.

Unfortunately for me, my images have never turned up.

The few pictures I have of Barcelona were taken either with my point and shoot or my phone.

I don't think I got a chance to love you Barcelona before that chance was taken away. But I am ready to forgive and forget. So we will be back.

Gaye Tims

My name is Gaye and I am travel junkie in need of a fix. I have been torn between travel, creative arts and the law. Now I am giving into my creative side by including travel and lifestyle in my blog.
Vancouver, BC, Canada