September 18, 2007
Wednesday, 9:00 P.M.

I just stayed on my room for the rest of the day on this particular day. I was a little bit tired because of the birthday celebration I attended the last night. But then I decided to go home on the evening. I took my ride from UP to Philcoa by jeep and then I waited for an aircon bus going to Pasay. Unfortunately, no aircon bus passed by for almost 30 minutes so I didn’t have any choice but to take an ordinary bus (which has no aircon). I left from Philcoa at about 7:00 P.M. As usual, there was a built up traffic from Philcoa to Pasay taking the EDSA route. To get away from being bored, I got my cellphone, tuned it to an FM station, and then I had just listened the music in my favorite FM station (guess what’s this station, lol).

The bus arrived at Pasay at around 9:00. I was so hungry that time so I went to a carinderia to buy some food to eat. In the table of this particular food stall, I saw four kids who, by judging on their physical appearance, are that of the street children. They were wearing rugged clothes, no slippers, and obviously hungry. The two of them were carrying styrofoams where there were leftovers and they were eating it. I felt compassion for them. I would be very guilty if I would not give them some food to eat. I asked the saleslady or the carenderia attendant to give them some food and I would be the one to pay for their expenses.

As these four kids were eating, there were some flashbacks that registered on my mind. I remembered myself many times starved from food, from clothing, and from the basic things that a child should have. Though I didn’t experienced being a street child, I experienced asking for help from people to the point that I seemed to be a beggar, crying in front of people whom I was asking for help. And most of the times, people just ignored me and left false hope on my heart. The faces of my two younger brothers suddenly appeared on my mind as if they were in front of me. I always keep on telling myself that as much as possible, I don’t want my younger brothers to experience what these kids are experiencing and the experiences I had gone through in the past. I have to do hard work for my brothers. I love them so much.

As I looked at these kids, I can’t help myself but to cry from my heart. Though no tears actually fall from my eyes (there were many people there, it’s a high way, and I don’t want to cry in public, hehehe), these two mirrors of light got tired seeing these kids. While they were eating, I saw the happiness on their eyes, on their actions, on their laughs. I asked each kid’s name and they politely told me their names and called me “Kuya”. They kept on thanking me. I let them felt comfortable in front of me, and we had a great conversation. I found out that they were just living under the LRT station and they’re living without their parents here in Manila for they came from the provinces except for the one kid. After they ate, they volunteered to clean up the table. They put the trash on the proper place. As they were about to leave, I told them to always take care of themselves. And they responded by saying, “Marami pong salamat Kuya sa pagkain. Ikaw din, Kuya, ingat. Ingat sa biyahe.” I was so happy to hear these words from them, not because I want to earn praise but I could see the simplicity of their personalities and the kindness of their hearts.

These things prompted me to think while riding on the bus from Pasay until I arrived home in Cavite. What kind of future will these four street children be waiting? Or is there any future for them after all if this is the scenario? How I wish I could have helped them more. How I wish our government could properly address this kind of problem. How I wish their parents are responsible enough to take good care of their children. How I wish there is no poverty in this world.

May we all have compassion for people who are starving from the basic necessities of life, who are thirsty for love and affection, and who are longing for a sense of belongingness. May we, who are more fortunate than others, be not judgmental, self-centered, and selfish.

Let God intervene and may we, His creations, be channels of blessings to these kinds of people around us, even in the simplest way we know.

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