Won't emphasize on this story too much since it's better told in person, but here's the gist of it.
If you're traveling alone, you have to make sure of your surroundings and the people you talk to. Few nights ago, I was pretty naive and thought two guys who approached me were just travelers there for work and being friendly.
1st - fuck with your emotions. Take you to a bar, buy you a drink. At this point I already had 2L of beer - and they knew. Again, naive.
2nd - these fuckers are slick. They'll tell that we'll go to one place. It'll be fun. Just hop in the cab. I've basically walked a pretty large chunk of Istanbul, so if I wanted to leave I could.
3rd - The Con. This is where they take you to this nightclub. When you walk in, there's "pretty girls" dancing. I say that with the stereotypical Arab accent. These girls are from the Ukraine and Russia. Looks like they belong in a mail order catalog. Cute. But if it were guys looking like Channing Tatum or Zac Efron - it'll be a different story.
Everyone is drinking and they bring girls to the table. These guys want me to dance with them put my arms around them. And think that little ol me doesn't realize what's going on. I have a half glass of vodka and stopped drinking. I started declining drinks for the ladies. This is when things get weird.
I went to the washroom, without my bag - like an idiot. And the guys want me to dance some more. So I do. I bounce my pectoral boobs. Women love it and it's led to gay threesomes. So everyone loves it.
4th - The Bill. Now it's the end of the night and the tab comes over. It's for about $3400USD. I'm shocked and I'm declining every single thing from these guys. I basically agree to pay for two drinks. They're not happy. I tell the guy to charge me for two while the con men are saying pay for half. This is when I need to grab my shit and go. Basically telling them to fuck off and the anger is brewing from the bar staff and the con men. Luckily there's taxis everywhere in Instanbul.
Lucky for me, black people stand out, I rush to the cab and this guy is pleading for his money or things will happen. I get in the cab with no destination yet and I'm out that bitch.
After some googling the next day by a US friend. My story has been told for over 11 years.
"Single Man Robbery"
When the banks started emailing and my accounts were locked, I knew something was wrong. The next day I'm on the phone figuring out that thousands of dollars were attempted on all my cards. Going dancing with pretty lady meant - let's go through this guys shit. One guy on the dance floor while the other does the work.
Lesson learned. And this was the 2nd highway robbery I had in Instanbul. I might need to dust off the passport by myself a bit more and be vigilant.
All in all, great city. But when they con. They con hard.