Confessions of AttyArj

I (almost) lost my bag, again…

October 11, 2008
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The other night I volunteered to go to the grocery to buy things that we need for the house and the office.  Since it’s already past 9pm, I tried to stick to my grocery list.  Unfortunately, I (again) committed the mistake of going to the grocery with an empty stomach so I ended up buying so much more. 

Since I was alone, I loaded my groceries back to the cart, rode the elevator and then pushed all the way to my car (I’m using my Papa’s Mitsubishi Adventure this week).  After unloading my groceries, I hurriedly left the grocery and headed home, super gutom na kasi ako.           

Upon entering Kaimito’s Julia Vargas Gate, I decided to call “A” to request assistance for the groceries.  However, when I attempted to get my fone from my bag, wala akong nakapang bag, wala yung bag ko sa passenger’s seat.  OMG!  I left my bag in the grocery cart!  Oh no, not again!  

Grabe, I can’t even describe how I felt at that time.  Kung may Kodak Moment, yung nangyari sakin nung Thursday, Heart Attack Moment.  Para akong nasapian ni Michael Schumacher at yung dala kong Adventure naging F1.  I think it took me no more than 45 seconds to go back to SM Hypermart and no more than 3 seconds to get to the slot where I left the grocery cart.  Hindi ko pinansin yung ticket girl at yung security guard na pumara sa akin.  

A few feet away from the slot, I saw a grocery guy collecting the carts left by the other shoppers.  OMG! I’m too late!  I took a very deep breath and then braced myself for the next scene.  OMG! My bag is still there! MY BAG IS STILL THERE!  I hurriedly checked its contents and, surprisingly, my wallet, Treo and Samsung fones were still there.  And, most importantly, the envelope containing our weekend Bazaar money was also there.  WHEW!  Papatayin na talaga ako ni “V” kung nawala ko yun.

On my way home, I berated myself for my negligence and for allowing myself to be in that situation again.  You see, a few years back, I also (almost) lost my bag while shoe shopping in SM Megamall.  Mas grabe yun kasi nawala talaga yung bag ko.

This is what happened then.  After ordering a particular shoe in my size, I sat on the couch and patiently waited along with some other customers.  When the shoes that I ordered arrived, I placed my bag behind me (almost sitting on it) and then leaned down to try on the shoes.  After trying on the shoes, I grasped my bag from behind but there was nothing there.  When I realized na nanakawan ako, I wasted no time, I run outside the store and looked for the nearest security guard.  I told him somebody stole my bag and then gave him instructions to radio the other guards for them to check shoppers’ bags at the exits.  After listening to my five minute non-stop monologue, the guard escorted me to their security office.   

Since the security office is located underneath the multi-level parking in Building A, it took us forever to get there.  When we got there, somebody showed me my bag and asked if that’s the bag I lost.  I told him it was and then asked how they found it.  He told me that one of their civilian securities saw a tomboy with a backback (oddly) carrying a handbag.  While walking away from the store, the tomboy slowly hid the handbag in her jacket and then stashed the jacket (along with the handbag) in her backpack.  The civilian security then tapped her shoulder and then escorted her to the security office.

When I asked where the girl was, they pointed to a girl (with cropped hair) crying in a corner.  When the girl saw me she said sorry and begged for forgiveness.  Duh!  Asa! 

After getting my story, the security officers showed me Megamall’s Mandurukot Hall of Fame.  Grabe, meron silang book stand na puno ng photo albums nang mga mandurukot at holdaper.  It was then that I realized na totoo ang crime rate sa Pilipinas at, dahil sa katangahan ko, lalo itong tumaas.

After preparing their security report, a couple of guards escorted me to the Mandaluyong Police Station near Shang-rila EDSA Plaza.  When the police found out that I’m a lawyer, medyo nagulpi nang konti yung tomboy na snatcher na humihingi na naman ng sorry.  Again, duh!

While at the police station, I called a friend, who brought a friend (bored daw sa office at gustong maki-gulpi).  Since hindi nila pwedeng gulpihin yung snatcher dahil nagulpi na ng pulis (mahirap itago ang maraming pasa sa pre-booking medical check-up), tinulungan na lang nila ako sa blotter and then sa formal complaint when we transferred to the Mandaluyong Police Headquarters. 

The case that I filed went through its course pero walang nangyari.  I received a Notice of Hearing but when I found out that somebody bailed out the snatcher, I no longer attended the hearing kasi masasayang lang ang pagod ko.  True enough, when I followed up the case, they told me the snatcher didn’t show up at the Arraignment hearing so the case was archived pending her arrest.

After the Megamall incident, I became praning (paranoid) when it comes to snatchers and holdapers.  Naging super conscious and careful ako so hindi ko talaga matanggap yung nangyari sakin last Thursday.  I never thought it will happen to me again.  Grabe, hindi na talaga ako uulit.  I’m sure hindi na kakayanin ng puso ko yung mga ganong klaseng pressure.     



lesson learned: Guwapo ang mga pulis sa Mandaluyong pero ayoko nang bumalik dun, hehehe.

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