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Robbed in Cali Colombia
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Cheetah Offline
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Post: #76
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-21-2015 04:38 PM)rudebwoy Wrote:  
(09-21-2015 03:49 PM)Cheetah Wrote:  You had a bad taxi experience and asked to be dropped off before you arrived at your destination.

If you wouldn't have had a bad taxi experience you would probably have waited to hop off until the car reached its destination.

So in a way your bad taxi experience contributed to you and the girl getting robbed, but not necessarily because the driver was a part of the robbery.

If you read the story, he said the taxi drove 20ft and stopped after they let him out.

I am sure the taxi driver knew where the hostel was and pretended to slow down to look for the building numbers. It seemed a bit too convenient as soon as the OP got out of the taxi, these thieves were waiting.

I wouldn't expect much from the police.

It's not unusual for taxis to drive just a little bit away from the dropped off passengers and stop until the driver knows where to go next. The taxis usually don't want to linger outside the last customer's place.

The op didn't write that he gave the name of the hotel/hostel. He wrote that he gave the address. The driver might not have known that the address belonged to that hotel/hostel.

As for waiting robbers, people arriving to hotels/hostels could be easy targets. Lingering outside of a hotel/hostel for an hour shouldn't be a problem for robbers.
(This post was last modified: 09-21-2015 05:05 PM by Cheetah.)
09-21-2015 05:02 PM
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joecolombia Offline
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Post: #77
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-21-2015 03:56 PM)Cheetah Wrote:  And lastly, is it really likely that an unlicensed taxi would stand in the line where only licensed taxis are allowed? The legit taxis would probably chase off the unlicensed I guess provided that there are several cars in line so at least a few of them are legit.

That`s a great point. Because of this, if you are coming to any colombian city, try downloading the apps easy taxi, tappsy or even uber to travel around. safer, faster and really cool. I won`t lie, cab drivers treat tourists like shit. they are over ambitious and try asking for more money that the actual ride costs. If you do hop into a "street" cab, ask him gently to turn on the taximeter, that would be at least an oportunity to not get stolen. also you can waze your direction in order to prevent the cab driver doing a longer ride that it is.

small tips that will make you less likely to get robbed fellows... step by step.
09-21-2015 09:58 PM
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joecolombia Offline
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Post: #78
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-21-2015 05:02 PM)Cheetah Wrote:  
(09-21-2015 04:38 PM)rudebwoy Wrote:  
(09-21-2015 03:49 PM)Cheetah Wrote:  You had a bad taxi experience and asked to be dropped off before you arrived at your destination.

If you wouldn't have had a bad taxi experience you would probably have waited to hop off until the car reached its destination.

So in a way your bad taxi experience contributed to you and the girl getting robbed, but not necessarily because the driver was a part of the robbery.

If you read the story, he said the taxi drove 20ft and stopped after they let him out.

I am sure the taxi driver knew where the hostel was and pretended to slow down to look for the building numbers. It seemed a bit too convenient as soon as the OP got out of the taxi, these thieves were waiting.

I wouldn't expect much from the police.

It's not unusual for taxis to drive just a little bit away from the dropped off passengers and stop until the driver knows where to go next. The taxis usually don't want to linger outside the last customer's place.

The op didn't write that he gave the name of the hotel/hostel. He wrote that he gave the address. The driver might not have known that the address belonged to that hotel/hostel.

As for waiting robbers, people arriving to hotels/hostels could be easy targets. Lingering outside of a hotel/hostel for an hour shouldn't be a problem for robbers.


The taxi had either two options to let you off before your actual destination. One, he got lost in the way or two he did planned to rob you beforehand, and was colluding with the thiefs.

Cab drivers in cali DO NOT stop for no reason. If they stopped your ride... you better try to run or else...

it is not common at all though, you got unlucky that day.
09-21-2015 10:02 PM
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Road_Less_Taken Offline
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Post: #79
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
Thanks for posting your incident. All my Colombian friends have been robbed or had something bad happen to them. My ex has been robbed something like 5 times. I think when you don't have a single local friend that hasn't been robbed or at least pick pocketed its hard to consider a country safe by any means. Take precautions! And always consider that you can, even with taking precautions, be a victim of circumstance.

That being said its easy to see warning signs in retrospect. The only strange thing to me is that the driver stopped for gas.
(This post was last modified: 09-21-2015 10:24 PM by Road_Less_Taken.)
09-21-2015 10:22 PM
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Post: #80
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-21-2015 01:45 PM)Turkish Republican Wrote:  I don't think its wise to carry a weapon in Latin America, he could of been killed if he had a gun on him. You don't wanna piss off the guys holding the semi-automatic guns.

Correct, I had some oral surgery done in Costa Rica (great doc in San Jose) and he had done forensic studies in Colombia and had a story about another doc that got shot by a guy in a car just for yelling at him. The other doctor had been cut off by this car and so he started cursing at the car out the window. The car stops and a guy gets out and pulls a pistol. One shot to the head and the doctor was dead.
You have to be very careful there.
09-21-2015 10:39 PM
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chochemonger1 Offline
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Post: #81
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
It is interesting how this thread has hit a nerve. As a latino guy, in Brazil or Colombia, I have never felt any real danger.
In Ukraine, I got into 2 semi fights. My brother got punched by a polish drunk in Warsaw.
In the end it is apples and oranges, because Eastern European men will use fists and not arms, generally. I respect that more.
09-21-2015 11:05 PM
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Post: #82
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-21-2015 10:02 PM)joecolombia Wrote:  
(09-21-2015 05:02 PM)Cheetah Wrote:  
(09-21-2015 04:38 PM)rudebwoy Wrote:  
(09-21-2015 03:49 PM)Cheetah Wrote:  You had a bad taxi experience and asked to be dropped off before you arrived at your destination.

If you wouldn't have had a bad taxi experience you would probably have waited to hop off until the car reached its destination.

So in a way your bad taxi experience contributed to you and the girl getting robbed, but not necessarily because the driver was a part of the robbery.

If you read the story, he said the taxi drove 20ft and stopped after they let him out.

I am sure the taxi driver knew where the hostel was and pretended to slow down to look for the building numbers. It seemed a bit too convenient as soon as the OP got out of the taxi, these thieves were waiting.

I wouldn't expect much from the police.

It's not unusual for taxis to drive just a little bit away from the dropped off passengers and stop until the driver knows where to go next. The taxis usually don't want to linger outside the last customer's place.

The op didn't write that he gave the name of the hotel/hostel. He wrote that he gave the address. The driver might not have known that the address belonged to that hotel/hostel.

As for waiting robbers, people arriving to hotels/hostels could be easy targets. Lingering outside of a hotel/hostel for an hour shouldn't be a problem for robbers.


The taxi had either two options to let you off before your actual destination. One, he got lost in the way or two he did planned to rob you beforehand, and was colluding with the thiefs.

Cab drivers in cali DO NOT stop for no reason. If they stopped your ride... you better try to run or else...

it is not common at all though, you got unlucky that day.

It was the op who requested to have the taxi to stop and being dropped off before the destination. I wouldn't say that slowing down and looking for the correct house number equals lost.
09-22-2015 12:04 AM
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choothia Offline
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Post: #83
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
__
(This post was last modified: 02-08-2016 01:33 AM by choothia.)
09-22-2015 01:03 AM
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bootyhuntah Offline
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Post: #84
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
To be fair, Cali, while it does have some really rough/desperate parts, also has many very nice neighborhoods. Chipichape area is nice, as is San Fernando, El Peñon, the area around El Ingenio, Ciudad Jardin, among many others.

Also, it is entirely possible that our luck that night was unbelievably shitty and there just happened to be a team of well-armed robbers waiting outside of my hostel for just such an opportunity. But looking back, it all seemed a little too perfect. All we can do is speculate at this point. Colombia on a whole was a helluva lot of fun. I still recommend the place. Just don't act like nothing will ever happen to you. Because, well, it can.

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09-22-2015 01:14 AM
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Cheetah Offline
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Post: #85
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
^^^^

Again it was very unfortunate and unfortunately you will probably never find out if the taxi driver was a part of it.

But a thought is that if it takes the girl 3 months to make the equivalent lost value it would probably be considered worthwhile by the robbers to stick around the area outside the hotel for a whole evening and go for the first victim who:

A) has some kind of luggage

and

B) is walking towards the hostel
09-22-2015 04:51 AM
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godzilla Offline
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Post: #86
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
Sorry to hear this story. At least your good.

I been told a few kidnapping stories of foreigners in my travels in Latin America. I would say they all have two things in common.

1. Taxis were involved.

2. The foreigner had some kind daily routine that allowed him to be a target.

Though I could see the taxi not being involved, waiting a couple hours outside a hostel to rob someone is a high paying job.
09-22-2015 09:39 AM
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CleanSlate Offline
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Post: #87
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
Glad you are ok, OP.

This is one of the reasons I haven't already been to Colombia, if it were a lot safer I'd have already gone there without hesitation.

Thank you for posting the lessons learned here. This would hopefully avert another robbery or even save someone's life.
09-22-2015 11:49 AM
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el mechanico Offline
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Post: #88
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
Lets say we as a group have small firearms stashed in cities all over the world and the OP while in town was permitted to carry one of them and then he shot and killed these guys.

What happens next?
09-22-2015 11:54 AM
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RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-21-2015 02:38 PM)LINUX Wrote:  
(09-21-2015 02:30 PM)Cheetah Wrote:  Is it broadly speaking equally bad in Brazil (the south excluded) compared to Colombia?

Brazil is a on a complete different planet than Colombia when it comes to crime. They could pretty much rename liveleak.com to whogotkilledinbraziltoday.com.
Laugh2

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09-22-2015 12:26 PM
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bootyhuntah Offline
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Post: #90
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-22-2015 11:54 AM)el mechanico Wrote:  Lets say we as a group have small firearms stashed in cities all over the world and the OP while in town was permitted to carry one of them and then he shot and killed these guys.

What happens next?

If the small firearm is a fully automatic uzi with a 30+ round clip, then yeah, we're good Wink.

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09-22-2015 07:25 PM
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WEDO Offline
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RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-21-2015 09:37 AM)bootyhuntah Wrote:  So I wanted to share this after I've had a few days to reflect on my experience. Not doing this to scare anyone, but I do want to make sure that people are mentally prepared and aware of this type of situation because it is certainly not unheard of in Colombia. Most importantly, I believe there are precautions you can take to prevent yourself from being a victim of crime, but this doesn't reduce your chances to zero, obviously. And lastly, even though bad shit does happen in Colombia, chances are that you fill be fine if you are aware and take standard precautions like you would in any country.

Backstory: I have been traveling Latin American for a continuous 8.5 months now with no problems. I had already spent nearly 88 days in Colombia with zero violent incidents. The previous 13 days or so, I had passed in the south of Cali in an highly secure apartment in Ciudad Jardin. Cali was to be my last port of call in the country with 90 days in total before heading south into Ecuador over land. I was having a tough time in Cali up to this point, only doing day-game approaches with essentially zero lays (after several dates with some very sexy but flaky women). Spent almost 2 weeks in the south of the city doing strictly day game around the University del Valle area and Unicentro and some parts of the north around Centenario Mall, with only a sloppy BJ to show for it all...which admittedly is still better than nothing.

That being said, I decided to ship in a young sexy 21 y/o Colombiana from Manizales (I had met about 5 weeks prior) for my last weekend in Colombia. I had a few lukewarm prospects for the weekend but decided on the sure things instead. She had been hitting me up lately with, "quiero verte antes de irte." So I decided to go for the guaranteed lovin and bought her a bus ticket to Cali.

I met her at the Terminal de Transportes around 10PM on a Friday night as her bus was actually on time. From here we grabbed a quick snack before making our way over to the taxi line. Take note this is the official taxi line - we did not hail a cab from the street which is generally not advisable in Colombia, even though I've done it several times without incident. There was a single dark-skinned Colombian guy (looked black) in front of us in the line with several other middle-class people with luggage behind us. Red flag #1, when it was time for the black guy to get a taxi, I noticed that the next available taxi actually waved off this black guy and pointed to us to come get in instead. The thought that crossed my mind was about a Chris Rock standup routine complaining how hard it is for a black person to get a taxi in NYC, but otherwise didn't think anything of it.

Red flag #2 - I was instructed to put my girls luggage in the front passenger seat. When I closed the door (a bit too firmly, apparently), the taxista started angrily complaining that I slammed it way too hard. He clearly seemed to be agitated for some reason. I apolgized and was like, "tranquilo, tranquilo." Anyway, I gave him the address to my hotel and didn't think anything more of the situation.

Red flag #3 - about 2-3 minutes after leaving the terminal, the taxista pulled into a natural gas refueling station to fill up the tank. We were instructed to get out of the car while it was being refueled for our own safety. The taxista then disappeared for a few minutes and returned once the refueling was complete, probably 4-5 minutes later.

Ref flag #4 - we get back in the car and the guy is complaining about how expensive it cost to have to refuel his car (50,000 COP) and about how he has already been working 20 hours straight today. I was starting to now get uncomfortable at this guy's negativity but me and my girl just kinda brushed him off and thought it better to ignore him.

We slowly approach my hostel now and it is probably 10:45 PM. My hostel is located on Calle 5 across from the Library. It is quite dark, there isn't much traffic, but I didn't think anything further. The taxista approached my hostel very slowly as he appeared to be looking at the numbers to see where the hotel was. Eventually, I just said, "this is close enough, we will walk 3-4 buildings...gracias." We get out of the taxi, my girl gets our on the opposite side toward the driver's side/street and I get out on the opposite side on the sidewalk/passenger side. Pay the man 20k and get about 9k change. I have the change now in my left hand and my girl's wheeled suitcase in my right hand. Close the door gently, and the guy pulls away about 20 ft and stops.

As I turn to my right I see a guy on a motorcycle (engine quietly running) wearing all black clothing and immediately notice a semi-automatic pistol in his lap, full face helmet on his head. Immediately I knew we were fucked. Next thing I know I feel a cold hard metal object being repeatedly rammed into my right shoulder blade. I knew it was a gun (#2). I dropped the taxi fare change to the ground, and we both simultaneously put our hands up. Then, I slowly went for my iphone 4 in my left pocket and just held it up. It was snatched up immediately. I look out of the corner of my eye and I see my girl in a hysterical panic. The girl was now being approached by guy on motorbike #1, gun shoved in her face. The guy takes her huge purse and her wheeled suitcase, when a third guy on motorbike pulls up now and scoops up her suitcase. The guy then starts patting her down with one hand while holding her at gunpoint with the other. From here, I still have a gun in my back, and my guy tells me "Cartera, Cartera." I reach into my right pocket and give him my moneyclip. From here, the guys slowly walk towards their waiting motorbikes while looking back over their shoulders at us.

Then, they just drive off, while occasionally looking back at us. I grab my girl and we immediately run into the front entrance of my hostel. The robbery is over, although she is absolutely hysterical and can barely breathe...

Overall damage: she lost what amounted to easily over $1200 USD in merchandise. For her, this is about a 3 month salary. Two smartphones, lots of nice clothing, her wallet, bank card, 30,000 pesos in cash, makeup, purse, etc. I lost about 150,000 pesos in cash, my travel bank card, my ID, and a beat-up iphone 4.

Lessons learned/advice from this experience:

(1) Whenever possible, always use easytaxi, uber, or a similar app when calling taxis in Colombia. This will ensure that you have the driver's information in the event shit hits the fan. I personally prefer using public transport when possible, but in a city like Cali this isn't really possible.

(2) Under no circumstances should your taxi driver stop en route to your destination. Taxi drivers are specifically prohibited from doing this during a taxi fare - didn't know this at the time.

(3) Under no circumstances should your taxi driver be on his phone. People in Colombia are generally very wary/paranoid of a taxi driver on their phone because it is easy for them to tip off some waiting robbers.

(4) If your taxi driver seems agitated or in a negative mood at all whatsoever, get the fuck out of the cab and get a new one. There is no reason you should be dealing with a taxi driver with a bad attitude or bad mood.

FINAL THOUGHTS

It turns out we firmly believe that we were set up - the whole thing was planned. When we stopped to fill up the tank, we believe that the taxi driver called in the muscle during the time that he disappeared to use the bathroom. Next day, we filed a police report at the police station in the centro of Cali, then I went to the bus station and we watched the video of the registered taxi line. While at the police station telling our story, one of the clerks just shakes her head, let's out a sigh, and says, "Cali es Cali" (Cali is Cali)...she seemed disappointed but completely unsurprised. Luckily, our taxi driver's vehicle was on video and we were able to get his plate number. That being said, it is highly unlikely that there will be any sort of justice done on our case. After talking with the police detective, we realized how swamped and understaffed their office seemed to be. We realize and understand that there will probably be no justice in this case, given how inefficient the justice system seems to be in this country. Lesson learned, and I hope at least one person can learn from this too.


Kind of weird the way it went down.....it's like the taxi driver wasn't really planing on setting someone up but then decided to set you up.

Usually taxi drivers that are looking to rob people usually cruise granada or avenida sexta and their friends with guns are usually only a couple blocks away..

You get in the taxi and go a couple of blocks....he turns down a street where the robbers are waiting....he slams on the brakes to get their attention and they come running up guns drawn....and rob you right there.

First time I have ever heard of a taxi driver actually taking the person all the way to their destination to be robbed.

Actually it is kind of smart....how would you ever prove he knew the guys that robbed you....he took you where you wanted to go....you paid him and he left.
09-23-2015 01:17 AM
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WanderingSoul Offline
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Post: #92
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
Are you still in Colombia, Wedo?

Haven't seen you post much for a while.
09-23-2015 01:51 PM
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dalbroker Offline
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RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
CS,

Cebu and Cali are the 2 biggest dumps I have been to personally.

If you can speak beginner level spanish....Colombia is great.

The nicer areas of Medellin and Bogota felt 10X safer than
Cali to me. Ex. Cali's nicest area did not even have paved
roads....they were in very bad shape.

Several gringos I knew in Medellin had lived there for 5+ years
and never even visited Cali...to give you an idea.

The Colombian girls are harder to game......but it will be much more rewarding and a DIFFERENT experience than SEA.

Plus, its much closer to the US.






(09-22-2015 11:49 AM)CleanSlate Wrote:  Glad you are ok, OP.

This is one of the reasons I haven't already been to Colombia, if it were a lot safer I'd have already gone there without hesitation.

Thank you for posting the lessons learned here. This would hopefully avert another robbery or even save someone's life.
09-23-2015 02:36 PM
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LINUX Away
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RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-23-2015 02:36 PM)dalbroker Wrote:  CS,

Ex. Cali's nicest area did not even have paved
roads....they were in very bad shape.

I think you got lost. Cali not having paved roads?

Seriously?
(This post was last modified: 09-23-2015 02:43 PM by LINUX.)
09-23-2015 02:43 PM
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newgame Offline
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RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-23-2015 02:43 PM)LINUX Wrote:  
(09-23-2015 02:36 PM)dalbroker Wrote:  CS,

Ex. Cali's nicest area did not even have paved
roads....they were in very bad shape.

I think you got lost. Cali not having paved roads?

Seriously?

Meanwhile in downtown Cali [Image: FeOwvHs.jpg]
09-23-2015 03:24 PM
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WanderingSoul Offline
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RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
Is that Call?

Looks like Cambodia.


Nevermind lol. Just zoomed in on my phone.
09-23-2015 03:46 PM
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Post: #97
RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
First of all,glad that OP is alright. Thanks for sharing this story as this is info is highly relevant for me. It's an important subject to discuss about as we are many travellers here on the forum.

I have never been robbed like that but I had guns pointed at my head and knives to my throat and as Rio said, it's more than enough to keep your butthole tight. Not funny at all.

Lots of great advice here regarding taxi scams.
One thing I often do myself if I feel that something is off is to look on the gps on my phone where the taxi is heading. Now, I'm not a fan of flashing around with iphones but it can be useful if you suspect that your taxi is heading towards a different destination.

Taxi scams and setups sucks. Not much we can do about it.
It's a part of the adventure.
09-24-2015 12:14 AM
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dalbroker Offline
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RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
They were paved but in supreme 3rd world condition.
Not something you expect from the nicest part of a
city.

I had a local dr take me to the nicest part of Cali.
Was not impressed.

Cali feels 10X poorer than Medellin and more dangerous
as well.

FYI - I have been to Colombia 8 times....spent 6 months
in Medellin in total....only was in Cali 3 days...but not
impressed. I have also been to 24 countries so far.

Ask A Colombian what people do in Cali - they party.
Colombians in Medellin and Bogota work hard. Very
different feel.







(09-23-2015 02:43 PM)LINUX Wrote:  
(09-23-2015 02:36 PM)dalbroker Wrote:  CS,

Ex. Cali's nicest area did not even have paved
roads....they were in very bad shape.

I think you got lost. Cali not having paved roads?

Seriously?
(This post was last modified: 09-24-2015 11:02 AM by dalbroker.)
09-24-2015 10:59 AM
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Quintus Curtius Offline
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RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
Great story. +1 rep point from me.

Stay frosty, brother.

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09-24-2015 11:51 AM
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RE: Robbed in Cali Colombia
(09-22-2015 01:03 AM)choothia Wrote:  8. Be wary of strangers walking to you with cotton up their noses. Especially if there's a possibility that they could be carrying a powder they can blow onto you.

What does this mean? Is this some kind of code for cocaine?
09-25-2015 02:52 AM
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