On the 2nd of November, year 2006, an almost-tragic event happened in the roads of Kalipayan, here in Tacloban City. I was in the 6th grade at the time and it was All Souls’ Day. My relatives and I went to the cemetery to visit the grave of my late grandfather, who passed away in June of the same year. We arrived there in the late afternoon. After offering prayers for the eternal repose of my grandfather, as well as exchanging stories with my cousins and aunts, my mom decided it was time to go home. It was already getting late, the time indicating it was almost midnight.
We waited for several minutes for a jeepney to come and when we were able to get one… The vehicle was moving at moderate speed and everything was going well. My mom was busy conversing with my aunt about important matters when the jeepney came to a halt, letting a passenger off near the bend on the road. All of a sudden; a man, out of nowhere, snatched my mom’s bag and immediately jumped off the vehicle. It seemed like time was stopped and everyone was left in a trance. Not wasting any more precious time, I jumped off the vehicle and chased the snatcher – who was carrying a small knife – until I came to a dead end.
I got a little frightened for the path where the snatcher ran off to was narrow and looked like a ledge and one small step would have led me drenched in the water. I ran back to the main road and finding relief in the presence of light posts, I jogged to a walk and tried to catch my breath. Going back to the jeepney where my mom, sister and aunt were waiting – all the while anxious about my sudden departure – I found men and bystanders gathering around my mom’s bag. Turns out, the snatcher dropped the bag and only stole my mom’s mobile phone and didn’t touch the other paraphernalia in the bag.
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Thankfully, my mom was pretty clever in keeping our passports and other essential things in a plain-looking plastic bag. The snatcher probably thought it was just trash and decided to discard it. We went back to the jeepney and arrived safely in our house. My sister was in a state of shock while my mom was truly grateful for the essentials that were left unharmed. I was mainly disappointed that I wasn’t able to catch the criminal but nevertheless thankful that I was given enough courage by God to chase the snatcher and got out of that situation without facing any threat or danger.
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