Barcelona, Spain. Admittedly, it is hard to put a face on the pickpocket community of any city, let alone on a robbery hub the size of Barcelona. Hard, but not impossible, as the quixotic local policeforce would describe it.
Indeed the times are changing and our once elusive brothers and sisters are coming out of the shadows to stand up for what is rightfully theirs. Manuel La Dron, an experienced wallet snatcher whose work is focused on the Metro Lines 2 and 3, elaborates: “Ever since I was little I started learning the craft. It´s the livelihood of generations and a big part of our identity. Ever since the public transport strikes started, we see our income dimish considerably and feel that it is becoming a real threat for our families and our overall wellbeing.”
Manuel also explains that the metros, buses and trams are so crowded that there is simply no space to move between the passengers. “You want to get close, but not too close. There is a certain distance to be calculated, one which requires a special skill. You don´t want to end up making someone feel uncomfortable. What the strikers don´t seem to understand is that we, also, have a work ethic to live up to and demand humane work conditions.”
With this conflict on the rise it is hard to tell what is next in line for the city of Barcelona who has been hit by acute political and socio-economical tension over the past year. The mayor tries to calm the waters and strike a deal with the public transport workers´ so that everything can go back to normal. “We expect the pickpokets´ situation to stabilize accordingly”, she declared in a press conference on Wednesday morning.
The robbers of Barcelona are expected to march through the city center on Saturday, April 21., as a sign of protest against reduced income, increased rates of sexual harressment charges and an overall dissatisfaction with the status quo.
Reports to follow.