I was asking myself if I should write this or not... I still do not know until now.
I was on my way home from OJT. It is my second day. I think to myself that I can get used to Makati pretty fast after a few trips. I am a country-side boy. I live in the province, and grew up there, in Laguna.
Before we went out of office, I asked my fellow interns and officemates a funny question (a line from a song, in fact, which was the closest to the thought I had that time). We then parted ways, and I went alone because I had a different route. I decided to listen to the song I quoted a line from.
On the bus stop at MRT Ayala Station, when I was about to board a bus, people were pushing, and I was just trying to stand there still and not push with them. They were undisciplined. Then, suddenly, I felt a fast hand move inside and outside my left pocket, as if picking something out of it. Without missing a beat, I grabbed the outside of my pocket to feel if I still have my phone in it. My other phone was gone. I immediately caught sight of a guy in white t-shirt, with a backpack, hurriedly walking in front of me, maneuvering his hands as if trying to hide something. I immediately ran to this guy and grabbed his right arm. I told him to give me back my phone and immediately cried for help as I am aware of the potential danger since he was aggressive and bigger.
The guy started punching me non-stop, as I was crying "help, thief!" It stopped when he punched me the last few times, and my hearing started to sound different. I thought it was a big concussion -- but it was just my MP3 falling off. I felt like I was so helpless that I was just like a Christmas tree that one can freely pick from at will, stealing anything they like without me being able to do anything about it. I thought I also lost my MP3 by that simple jab, and that he was too much of an expert. But, I realized that it just fell, and having a sentimental value to me, I immediately stopped and picked it up... I was glad it was not stolen too.
Just a few seconds after all that happened, recovering from a mild concussion, a man came to me telling me that he was shouting at me repeatedly. He saw the man running while I cried for help. He said he would accompany me, but he thinks he already rode a bus. I followed him. I asked him questions like what did he look like, where did he go, did he see everything, can he describe the person? He only said that he had a white shirt. I immediately became paranoid of every suspicious-looking/pretentious guy in white. I tried to point to one, and he said that, "no, he had a back-pack". I told him that the previous guy I was grabbing was who I thought was the thief. I told him that he was too "guilty for punching me". He commented that the person I was talking about "might just be humiliated in public" to do that. But, I am not sure if he really saw the scene where I got jabbed and pummeled by the guy.
Anyway, I thought that I grabbed the wrong guy, that in the middle of being punched the "real thief" was running away, and that I had to take whatever step I had to get back to the thief. But, coming to piece if together, the guy I grabbed was very suspicious, defensive, and started punching me right away when I attempted a talk. And, when I lost just a few-moments attention at him, he immediately disappeared. I might have got it correctly, but the police or people in charge I was expecting to help me control the situation just weren't there.
I felt so unsafe, so helpless, like people like the police weren't there when you needed them. There were lots of people who saw it, I got humiliated, and got no resolve. They all just watched there as I cried for help in the middle of the bus stop. I feel like Makati is too un-secure with all the criminals like that. I'd rather stay home in Laguna because it's much peaceful here. I think my earlier sentiments about not wanting to live a work life like this is very much satisfied by this situation. It just happened probably a half-hour before the incident.
The jabs were not painful. I just felt like I was being thrown away in different directions with different hooks. They only started feeling painful after all the action, when I was looking for the supposedly "other" thief, and when I was ready to give up and accept that I lost him. I think this time that I got him, but nobody was there in the middle of the crowd, and with the presence of the police, to help me. I have seen lots of suspicious people having different modus operandi in that station, yet there is no sufficient security going on. Will the government really care? Or will they only care for their own government?
I stopped halfway the punching series, because I feared that I might lose more than just my phone, including my beloved MP3 player...