Thanks for sharing this Mal. Im quite surprised that this kind of f#cked up stuff happens at the countryside. I wouldn’t be surprised if this happens in a ghetto area. That they picked you because you were with your kid illustrates how ruthless these sort of people are.
I think this story also really highlights that you have to trust your feelings sometimes. It makes sense to act logical and rational but those hunches should always be considered and alert you to pay more attention. We did evolve the way we did to spot trouble and our unconsciousness might pick up more than our conscious part of the brain.
Alea iacta est ("The die has been cast")