Last Saturday night, I was informed that a friend and also a swim team co-parent’s handbag was snatched as she was sitting in the front seat of a tricycle ride(public transportation in our town)on her way home. As the secretary of Swim Team’s Org., that information told me that contact numbers will be updated as soon as she gets a new phone which I believe was inside the now-snatched handbag. She was frantic for all her possessions inside the bag, of course, who wouldn’t be? If it was me…I would be more than just frantic. She is a good friend and an awesome mom to her kids. I feel sorry for her because of the incident but on the other hand was thankful as she is safe. I saw her yesterday during the kids’ training sessions. She related that after having the incident reported her handbag was recovered Sunday morning thrown near a ditch close to their place and somebody was able to come across it who happens to know her. Surprisingly, everything was intact specially her Identification Cards that she was most worried of except for the cash that was inside her wallet and the USB Flashdrive internet modem that she carries with her inside the bag. The snatcher must have tried to turn off the cellphone but failed to do so as her keypad lock feature was protected with a password and finds the phone useless for that matter and decided to leave it behind. In short, money-less bag and everything else was returned to my friend.
After training sessions I went to the city for some errands. At the mall, as I was about to pay my purchase, I found a cellphone at the cashier’s counter top partly hidden behind the Bantay Bata donation can making it impossible for the cashier to see it unless she will move the cash register’s monitor away from where it is at. I picked the phone and called for the lady in salmon orange colored top which I happen to notice using the phone before setting it down as she put her wallet back inside her bag before she turned and left just as I was approaching the counter. It is a blackberry phone and she was delightedly thankful when I handed it to her.
At the bus terminal later that day, I felt lucky to find a still empty bus at the spot waiting for its departure time because it meant that I will be able to sit where I want. Getting up the steps of the bus, I found a Nokia E63 laying by the window seat at the front row. I turn around me but realized I am completely alone inside the bus. By the rule of “Finders Keepers” I was hesitant to pick it up, afraid that something will happen if I touched it. Living in Mindanao, I am perfectly aware that most of Mindanao bombings were strategized with the use of cellular phones and with this thinking in my head at that moment, I was just standing there, unable to move and freakin’ scared staring at the phone. Will all my courage, I reached out and press a key on the phone, the screen immediately light up showing a man’s picture wearing a familiar red and blue colored shirt. I leaned closely, still not picking it up, studying the picture I realized that the man in the picture is wearing a DMS uniform (Davao Metro Shuttle). In fact, he just looks like one of the guys joking around with others in the same shirt by the dispatch booth which is few meters away from where the bus is at. Relieved, I picked the phone and call for the guy in the picture who happens to be the driver of the bus. Like the lady at the mall, he was delightedly thankful too. He even told me “ingat”(take care) and thank me once again as I was getting off at my stop.
“What is up with these people leaving their cellphones behind??” that is what’s going on in my mind during the bus ride. I find it pretty smart for my friend to protect her phone with a password and because of that, there is no need for contact number update and most importantly she didn’t need to get a new one. Unfortunate for her that she was a victim of such incident but still lucky enough to be safe and got some acquaintance who cared to pick up the ditched bag and find a way to return it to her.
I just hope that, the lady at the mall and the bus driver will both learn their lessons to be watchful of their belongings. They might not be as lucky to have finders who don’t tend to keep or I might not be around for a phone-picking task.