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11:40 AM. The sweltering heat from the sun has devoured the entire massivenes of the school plaza. Tricycle horns blaring, high-pitched sound of traffic enforcers' whistle and students silently chit-chatting in distant. It was a matter of simply minding their own businesses heading to home, after the official announcement for class suspension. I was patiently waiting for a tricycle, and sat on a bench in an old-fashioned waiting shed beside the pile of garbages. The roof was ripped, and flies were on top of the improperly disposed trashes.
Minutes fast forward, my bemused countenance was disrupted by the arrival of these 2 kids who came near the the garbages. Their physical features were evidently different from the other people as I am. Their blond hairs shone under the intense of the sun. Their ripped clothes were atleast trying to cover some parts of their body. Afterwards, they unhesitantly dove into the pile of garbages; trying to find some foods to eat. Honestly, despite of feeling sad about their situation, I was amazed on how dedicated they were for their own survival.
The other one left his accompany, probably his brother, and started to ask for some money to people. No one paid attention to him, while others were obviously ridiculed to the child. I did not see any traces of sadness, misery, and disappointment of him. In distant, he saw me sitting on a bench. He fastly ran, lifted his palm, and with hopeful sound, he asked for a money. I, on the other hand, had enough money yet, for my fare to home. I wanted, somehow, to pay credit for his effort. I picked a one peso coin from my pocket, and gave it to him. With mouth wide open, he said 'SALAMAT' or 'THANK YOU' in English. He called the other child, and together, they left.
Badjao or “Sea Gypsies”. It was definitely not my first time seeing them. There are actually hundreds of them roaming around the streets, and trying to survive a day by asking for money, food, and even selling their own product like smuggled phones and bags. There are also instances that they go beyond that. Others will give you a spit if you won't give, and some steal phones and sell it in exchange for money. They are even facing discrimination wherever they go. But, in life, we should never generalize or make a conclusion to someone that easy.
11:51 AM. After I gave that one peso coin to the boy, I opened my black umbrella and secretly followed them. It was hard sneaking on to them because they would instantly stop when they would see a load of trash, or people whom they can ask money for. But, what happened next, shocked me the most.
12:00 PM. They went to a bakeshop, barefoot. Before that, they gathered first their accumulated money and counted it. As soon as they have finished counting, they pointed an 'Ensaymada', a pastry product and a common bread sold in bakeshop. The kids left the shop, and continued walking until they reached a tree where there were plenty of their kinds under it. They shouted loud from afar, and the small kids immediately grabbed the cellophane. All of them shared the bread those two kids bought and brought. The happiness was so blatant on their faces. They were laughing. They were even cheering.
12:05. I left that exact location, called a tricycle, and went home. As I was riding in the tiny tricycle, there were many thoughts running through my mind. I reached home, ate my lunch and reflected. I had this feeling of sadness, happiness and satisfaction.
Sadness, because, even up to this modern times, there are still people who are suffering from extreme poverty and face discrimination. Happiness, because witnessing such heart-warming scenario has brought butterflies in my heart. And, satisfaction. The feeling of satisfaction happens when you become a part of any achievement. In my case, who would have thought that laughter and joy will be made out from a peso coin of happiness?