Some tipps for sleeping in your car at a highway gas station:
- Locking your car overnight? You dont need to if you are the adventurous type of traveller.
- Keeping your passport and important documents with you all them time? Why bother with that, when you can just put them in your bag on the driver seat.
- Hearing strange noises at night, which sound like your car door is opening? Just turn around and sleep on.
After following my travel tipps, I found myself robbed the next morning. My passport(s) were gone, my Carnet de Passage (you need that document to bring a car into Iran/Pakistan/India) and basically all my other documents.
The guys from the gas station’s snack bar called the police for me and I bought a sandwich. While I was waiting for the cops, the waiter came out laughing “It’s not your day today!” and handed me my credit card which I had left at the counter.
The police arrived, and they were just shaking their heads when I told them I had not locked the car doors because DAMN IT who steals something from a car when I am IN THE CAR?!?
They were still shaking their heads.
After they wrote their report, they sent me to the German embassy to get a new passport.
At the German embassy, I was not allowed in because I had no passport. And for getting a new passport, the embassy was the totally wrong place of course, instead I had to go to the German Rechts- und Konsularabteilung at the other end of town (ah Germany, that feels like at home!).
But when I mentioned my name, they suddenly handed me a small note with a name and a phone number and told me: “that guy has your passport, call him and get it back from him”. Before I could react, they explained me that my passport was already marked as stolen in the Interpol database, and I had to undo that first. So the way still lead me to the Rechts- und Konsularabteilung.
The employees were chilling on the street in front of their office and they already had heard of my misfortune. They removed my passport from the Interpol wanted list and scheduled a meeting with the finder of my passport (his name was Dobrica – translated to “good man”). He had found it in the trash at a highway parking place. I had to meet him there in one hour, some kilometers from my nightly domicil.
When I arrived there, he was already waving with my bag and all my documents were still inside. I promised to send him a post card from India and continued my travels.
Of course, I had not left any money in the bag (the car was not locked after all, I’m not stupid!), so the whole incident just costed me twice the highway fee and 4 hours. Pretty neat hm? Or to say it with ebay, excellent, anytime again!