I think that’s probably the best way to describe how I feel.
I have passed the stage of anger, I stopped despairing and I am no longer afraid – all that remains is sadness.
Let’s start at the beginning:
Last Thursday I flew to Barcelona together with my photographer Max. The plan was to shoot some beautiful pictures to mix things up a little on my blog. Barcelona is one of my favorite shooting locations, incredibly versatile and simply beautiful all around. We brought ten outfits, and all went really well – until we started shooting number seven. Once that one was wrapped up, we returned to the car, and found that one window was gone.
‘Did you leave a window open?’ I asked him.
And then the reality of the moment hit me.
The moment when you realize you’ve been robbed.
The moment where you still have a bit of hope that not everything is gone.
The moment when that last bit of hope dies as well.
The moment when you start to take stock of all the items that were stolen from you.
The moment when the world stops turning for a long minute.
The moment when I felt a tightness in my chest and couldn’t see through my tears.
A single moment that transforms a beautiful journey into a horror-trip.
I keep asking myself, did I make a mistake somewhere, at some point? Should I have brought fewer outfits? Should I have left certain items at home? But the conclusion is always the same: No, it’s not my fault! We were no more than 100 meters from the car, and shooting the last outfit took us about ten minutes. Everything that may have looked valuable was stowed away in the trunk of the car or hidden under the seat. We left some clothes casually in the backseat, but in my opinion that would have hardly seemed enough of an incentive to break into a car (a Fiat 500, on top of it). The area didn’t seem particularly dodgy, either – the odd jogger with digs, a young student girl practicing her instrument and a bunch of fishermen. Not a scene to arouse my suspicion. What can I say – I misread the situation, completely.
I am not a carless person – on the contrary! I’m one of those people that lock their bike even if they hop into a convenience store for one quick minute. I had an extra lock installed in my flat door, and I’m careful to always lock it. I never leave any of my items lying around unattended, and I never carry my passport and ID with me at the same time to make sure I won’t lose both if worst comes to worst. I don’t like risks, and I don’t like losing control of a situation.
‘I haven’t heard you cry so hard for many years. Don’t take it so hard, Masha!’
Easier said than done. Many of the stolen items are irreplaceable and carry loads of memories. There was the first designer bag I ever bought, the Celine Trio. After all these years it’s still one of my absolute favorite bags, barely a week has passed where I didn’t take it out at least once. There were the grey linen trousers by Renee Lizard with the perfect fit and just the right mixture of elegance and comfort, a great purchase I made at an Outlet. Or the Fendi bag I bought to celebrate after I transferred the final installment of my tax-repayment – a present I gave myself to mark the occasion of closing a task that had been open for years. There was my favorite Iron Maiden shirt, which always reminded me a bit of my old self. There was my precious red dress by Dawid Tomaszewski, a unique item, literally one of a kind on this planet, which I was saving for a special moment. There was also the gold necklace by Georg Jensen that I had borrowed with the solemn promise to return it in one piece. So much persuasion was necessary until it was finally given to me. I wanted to create a very special look to really make the necklace shine in all its glory. But that won’t happen now.
The list is endless.
They even took my skin colored bra (another perfect fit!) and my make-up?! WTF?!
Ok, I know, these are just objects. But some of them were favorite objects, carrying not only a very high material value (more than 30.000 EUR!) but also an emotional charge. Almost all of the things that were stolen carry memories, and they were all perfect in one way or another. So much work went into creating the looks and selecting the best ones for the trip. They were only objects, but for me they were more than that: memories, and in some cases personal rewards.
Of course I’m grateful and relieved that we were not harmed. We are healthy and unscathed. I am thankful that to the best of my knowledge no physical harm was done to anyone. But you will understand that I’m deeply sad about losing my favorite items, won’t you?
In a way, what’s worst about it all is the fact that I can’t see that I made any mistakes, which also means I can’t even derive a lesson for the future from this situation. Maybe that’s the only thing there really is to take from this: I have to accept it and move on.
I know I will feel sad for some days and weeks, but that feeling will pass. That’s life. Sometimes you’re lucky – and I definitely count myself as a very lucky girl in many ways – other times misfortune strikes. Shit doesn’t always happen to the others – no one is exempt from an occasional streak of bad luck. Shit happens, and I guess it was my turn.
Yes, it can happen to everyone. The important thing now is to continue, to come to terms with my feelings as fast as possible and to lose no time in moving on. I don’t want to come out of this experience with a lingering feeling of fear or suspicion, and I don’t want to associate Barcelona with this crap for all eternity. I refuse to be angry, frustrated or scared. I don’t want to be a victim, so I simply refuse to be one. Yes, Barcelona is dangerous, that much I have learned the hard way. Still, it remains an incredibly beautiful city, very versatile and full of nice and warm-hearted people (most of them, anyways).
A little side-note: the only thing the thieves left behind were my Birkenstocks. Makes me wonder, did they feel sorry for me when they saw how uncomfortable my shoes were, or were the slippers just too unattractive to loot? I’m actually genuinely asking myself that, but I guess there are some things we’ll never know…