Yesterday, my sister (Nel) and I went out at around 3:30 or 45PM. We were headed to SM North EDSA to meet with a good friend. Since there were only the two of us, we weren’t allowed to take a cab ride till SM North ‘coz our fam believes that it is not a 101% safe. Being the obedient kids that we are, we took the other route where which we have to take a jeepney ride until Muñoz market, then another jeepney ride from Muñoz market until SM North ikot, SM North ikot, SM Nooooorth ikot~ (if you know this terminal then you definitely understood what I meant). So, from the first jeepney ride, we avoided a suspicious looking man who’s probably in his 40’s. There were two jeeps which passed in front of us, and we initially intended to ride the first one. But since the man suddenly rode the first, we took the second instead. Then the second ride (at Muñoz market) came. As I was paying for our fare (we have to pay before we climb in the jeepney), two men who are in their 30’s suddenly stood too close from my both sides. I knew right there and then that that was definitely more suspicious than the first encounter we just had.
During the 5-minute-ride to SM, one of the two men was seated across me while the other was seated behind the driver. They were on the same side, but were about four seats apart from each other. My sister was quietly getting tensed already since she has been traumatized ever since she got held-up during our 2nd year in college. But she was calm until we got off at SM North. However, when we passed through the entrance of the mall, those two men did too. That was when my sister told me, we’re being followed. I didn’t buy the idea though, not until I saw one of those two men not just looking our way but looking at us. So we had to change our route to distract the newly earned stalkers. We went up to the 3rd floor, then we went down by the escalators located in front of the National Bookstore. When we reached Yakimix (which is our destination by the way), we looked around to search for our friend, but surprisingly, it was those two men who then again greeted our sight. SHIT. We were really being followed. But when those two men saw where we were, they stopped. Our spot was heavily guarded, literally. There were two guards by Yakimix, another two by the mall’s entrance, and another one at Watson’s. They retreated. Then from there we saw our friend, and then we had the planned dinner.
After the dinner, we waited a few minutes for our mom so we can go home together. When we got home last night, I was more quiet than the usual. It was only then that I realized; things could have gone bad if we were totally not paying attention to our surroundings earlier that day. But before you mistake this note as something else, I do not have tips on how to avoid snatchers in my pocket alright.
This is a mere sharing of realizations, and reflections in life.
As my sister and I were having our regular 3 to 4-hours talk before falling asleep at dawn, I told her, probably the reasons why Papa God made us experience what we went through earlier are:
(1) because we selfishly judged the man we came across with during the first jeepney ride,
(2) because He wants us to be more careful when we are enjoying outside, and
(3) because if it weren’t the ever-attentive us who were there in that situation earlier, those two men would have probably succeeded in snatching a cell phone, a wallet, a bag, a person or whatever they had in mind back then.
You might think that this encounter is just one out of the hundreds, thousands, hundreds of thousands and even millions of these activities that happen every single day (at least in the Philippines), why make a big deal out of it?
The truth is, these fellow Filipinos of ours, who are more importantly our brothers and sisters in Christ, are mere victims. They are among the “poor” who comprise majority of our population. They are deprived of education, of work, and of all those which a man can be deprived of. And they are left with nothing much but wrongful options. It is easy for us to bad-mouth them (especially if we’ve been victimized) because we think they contribute nothing good to the nation. But in reality, even if that is the case, they deserve neither to be judged, nor to be feared. I totally feel bad for having called them “creepy men” in a tweet I posted last night.
Instead of judging them and pointing fingers at them (in every way possible), why not utilize the best weapon we have? That which we call prayer. If we cannot and do not intend to lend a hand to these people physically, financially or emotionally, then at least spiritually, there might be something we can offer. Through our prayers, we can keep not only ourselves safe from harm, but also others safe from committing harmful things towards their fellow men.
In truth, I know this note may seem pretentious and just verbose to any or even all of you. And if ever you are being surprised that I am suddenly talking about all these religious stuff, please be informed that I am just your average Roman Catholic parishioner who goes to church once a week. But you know, these people who we see as dangerous criminals, they need our prayers. More importantly, they are our brothers and sisters who deserve it too. I hope they will not be deprived even of this. And after all, it must be nice to contain within us as well that deep, selfless, unconditional love He has for each and everyone of us despite all our imperfections.
Today, He has provided me these words to say, I believe, He wants it to be shared.
God bless us all! ♥
Love and peace to you,