You know that $250 bottle of wine I told you about a few days ago. I knew there was something fishy about the whole thing and I didn’t want to believe it could happen to me. But I fell for the Beijing Teahouse Scam.
Apparently, it works like this. You will be walking along (and this can be one person or a couple of you) and you will be approached by some people from China posing like they were from out of town (just like my supposed friends). They chat you up. You have a great experience, a little authentic Chinese culture, and they take you to a teahouse where you have tea, a good chat, and then they charge you an outrageous amount of money. Just like me.
Now you can scream poverty, you can scream a number of things to see if it will help you out, but a lot of people fall for it. And I was a sucker.
I don’t know if this will work, but I am going to dispute the charge when I get back. I put it on my credit card so I hope that some of that money will come back. I would do it now, but I can’t contact my card company via e-mail. They only have phone numbers. I am just having a great week.
I am really, really, really super mad at myself. This isn’t my first rodeo and I got scammed. I know this is bad to say, but I am more on my guard than ever before. I don’t trust anything right now even when people seem like they are trying to be nice. I just walk on by and pretend I don’t speak English or I speak Spanish and they leave me alone.
Damnit! Well, I guess it could’ve been worse.
Update: I don’t know why but I actually feel better after admitting this. I just have to laugh and not it affect me too much. I feel really dumb, but I think I have gone from being angry to just kind of laughing, hoping I can get the charge reversed when I get home, and learning from this. We all make mistakes and this one was an expensive one.
Ironically, this post has more hits on it than any I have had in a couple of months. I guess I need to make more mistakes or have better titles to suck you guys in to read this blog :).