Here are this week’s 5 Life Pro Tips.
01. When paying a friend cash…
Ask them to double check it so they don’t feel awkward counting it in front of you. I think it is less about the awkwardness of it, but about trust. When people pay and you count it they feel like you don’t trust them.
02. Keep a tow strap or tow rope in your vehicle…
If you get stuck, someone with a 4×4 can pull you out. Many 4×4 owners don’t keep tow straps or ropes in their vehicles. A few years ago I got my car stuck is a snow drift. Several guys with 4×4 trucks stopped to offer help, but none of them had a rope or strap to use to pull me out.
03. Popular scams to look out for in European Cities
When visiting London, or any other big European city don’t fall for these popular scams.
A “Cups & Ball” scam is very popular on a Westminster Bridge in London. The idea is simple. There are three cups and one ball in scammer’s hands. He then hides the ball under one of the cups and shuffles them around for 30 seconds or so. All you need to do is tell him which cup is the ball under and you win £10 (depends on how much you bet). Unfortunately, you will never get it right! Even worse, a good scammer will employ the following layout: The scammer is doing cups and balls with a crowd watching. You push in through the crowd, intrigued, to watch. Five minutes later, you notice that your wallet is gone. The crowd was really just full of scammer’s friends, who pickpocketed you on your way in.
“Friendship Bracelet” scam is very popular in Paris, Rome and many other major European cities. You will be approached by a “smiley” scammer who will say something like: “You look very happy, you need this magical friendship bracelet to make your relationship last forever” and he will not give you a choice. While saying that, he will be already holding your hand and in a matter of seconds the piece of string (Yes! it is just a piece of string) will be on your wrist. Obviously, he will then demand a payment for it.
04. If looking for someone to take your photo at a landmark…
If you are looking for someone to take a photo of you at a landmark or other scenic spot, look for the person with a nice camera who is also taking photos. It’s a good bet that they know what they are doing with a camera and you will likely get a good shot. It also reduces the risk of them just running off with your camera.
05. If a dog’s owner tries to stop them from jumping on you…
Or begging for food from you, etc., don’t insist that ‘it’s fine’ and allow/encourage the dog to keep doing it. They’re trying to train it, and you’re really hindering the process. Encouraging the dog makes training really difficult and takes much longer. They tend to not learn ‘okay, I can jump with this one person but it’s bad with everyone else’, they just learn ‘mom is mean and doesn’t let me jump on her but everyone else loves jumps!!!!’
This advice is intended for those who go against the owner’s plain, straightforward request that you not encourage the dog, and those who never thought of it this way.