Half Used Bar of Soap

Czech Republic Add comments

The loud banging, followed by a pop and car alarm that got me to stick my head out the van window, then hustle to put my shoes on in an outburst of heroic energy, which due to my slow realization that saving someone’s stereo was not worth the risk, ended up taking much longer than usual, and to again stick my head out the window to see a man of medium height and medium build, with black, shoulder-length curls, wearing blue jeans and a white long sleeved shirt dash past me, chest back, legs flailing, stomping to control his speed down hill as he fled from the hollering white sedan and sparkling bits of glass, past my van and around the corner at one AM the night prior, probably should have been enough of a warning.

Staying parked in the same spot for four days straight, on a street where each night I watched the same man take his entire radio out of his car, guts and all, and where half the other parked vehicles had clubs clamped to their steering wheel, probably wasn’t the best of decisions either.

I got tired of always carrying it around and finally having a place to leave it, I was leaving it quite a bit. I actually thought I did a good job hiding it there, in the bottom of the cabinet, beneath the jumper cables, tools and engine fluids, but I suppose it could have been better.

In all honesty, enjoying the challenge of writing lately, I’ve been using it much less and when I did it was often out of a feeling of duty or request. A few times I even mulled this over while I was leaving it in the van, wondering how I would deal with it.

Thinking back over all these things, it’s almost like I willed it to happen.

And maybe that’s why when I got back in my van at quarter past twelve on Tuesday night, saw that my box of magic effects was open and scoured on the back bench, grasped the fact someone had broken in and then looked to find my Nikon D200 Digital SLR camera, telephoto lens and five flash memory cards had vanished, I didn’t go into a state of rage, panic or depression, but instead said to myself; “Hmm. That sucks. I guess I have to go to the police station.”

Which is what I did, but they were closed. The police station was closed, you ask? Yes, they were closed.

However, the center of Prague is currently horded by as many tourists as Disneyworld during school vacation, so there are police out everywhere at night. I waved down a big, shiny, green-striped van full of them and spoke to the driving officer.

“Do you speak English?”


“My van was just broken into.”

His eyes widened as if shocked that I was reporting such a crime so calmly.

“You need to file a report!” he offers.

“Yes I know, but the office is closed.”

“Sorry, I’m just city police,” he says shrugging his shoulders. “You can go in the morning.”

At that, he drove off.

So much for a proper investigation, I thought. Not that I actually expected one, seeing as in my home city of Providence blood need be shed for such action to be taken.

After denying the same overweight hooker of business for the third time that night, I moved my van down the street out of her view, cleaned up the small mess my robber had made and went to bed.

The worst of the experience was the thirty or so minutes before I fell asleep that night. My thoughts were neurotically occupied with an accounting of possessions as I feared leaving something out of the report in the morning, which would have made collecting insurance monies more difficult. Though frustrating, this did allow me to notice some other relatively minor items were missing, most interestingly my bag full of hygienic supplies.

The robber took my soap! It was a half used bar of soap, which was obviously a personal bar and had not been cleaned in the way one might clean a borrowed bar of soap after using it.

However, after having seemingly read through the manuals to all my magic effects, I was glad to find he did not take any of them. Nor did he take any of my books, my case full of DVD’s backing up all my digital photography or my acoustic guitar. And as usual, I had my laptop with me.

In many ways, things could have been much worse.

4 Thoughts on “Half Used Bar of Soap”

  1. Jake Says:

    Dude that rots, that was a nice camera too man! Sorry that happened to you…


  2. gert Says:

    wow. ouch. didn’t expect that.

  3. jeff Says:

    Sorry to hear about that! At least you have all the pics backed up. Have you been sending a copy of each one home? And do you have travel insurance that covers your camera?

  4. kevin Says:

    I had a simular response when my car got stolen…i was like…i did park it there right? Then i started to say….”really God….really?” You will be reimbursed and you will get Sevenfold back what was stolen. Thanks for writing and i hope all is well.


Share your Thoughts

WP Theme crafted by N.Design Studio and tweaked by me with inspiration from the 4HWW Blog.
All content © copyright 2018 John P Morgan Jr | Log in