Sunday, October 31, 2010
I was buying butter at 7/11, second in line..waiting, when a small girl, about 7 or 8? still dressed in her school uniform, picks up a small chocolate and asked the counter girl how much it costs. I can't help but eye the girl. she was dressed in an old worn out uniform, obviously a hand me down..little big for her, a little dirty even..my eye also caught what she's holding in her hands...coins: 7 pesos in all...and she, was holding a toblerone!...
girl: ate magkano to?
girl, picked up a smaller chocolate and asked: ate eto?
undaunted, picked up a less expensive looking piece and asked: ate eto po?
a little crestfallen, but continued to pick up even smaller pieces of candies and kept asking.
I was fixated at the girl, that i forgot it was my turn. i quite didnt know how to feel. i did not feel embarrassed for her, coz her voice never waivered. i didnt feel pity, coz she was not begging.
I was sad for her, yes..so i decided to buy her the chocolate. I said:
me: ate bayaran ko na to (picked up two toblerones)
countergirl to the girl: o, babayaran na ni ate...(smiling)
And Lo! the young girl refused! i was fumbed. insulted? i dont know. she picked up instead a small gum, 5 pesos, and paid for it. I said to her: ayaw mo na ng chocolate? bigay ko na sayo. She just looked at me, clutching her spare coins. those were hard earned coins, i get it, yet her face told me she didnt need my sympathy. She got pride. The girl got punk! i smiled.
A lot of older kids outside ran around begging, yet this girl wont accept a chocolate she wanted for free. there is hope for tomorrow!
smiling, i walked home.