So I will share what I experienced earlier today on a bus ride going to work.
It was pass 11 PM here in the Philippines, probably 20 minutes after I rode the bus, an over loaded bus I must say, a female got in.
After just a few minutes she started talking to a male passenger, standing –same as the other 20 people in the middle of the bus, and started asking for money. Her line was something like Kuya pahingi naman ng 50 pesos kulang kase pamasahe ko. (Can you please give me 50 bucks as my fare is insufficient.) They guy then gave him 50 bucks. She moved a little closer to the door of the bus, still muttering a few things I can’t understand. She tried to ask for the same amount from the guy sitting next to me but he was wearing his headset so he probably did not hear her.
After a few tries, she went down about 500 meters from where she rode the bus.
After she got out of the bus, the bus driver and conductor started talking. They said this girl usually gets on the bus and asks for donations to passengers with her sob stories. Sometimes, she ask donation (abuloy) for her dead mom, dead father, dead uncle, sick sister or sick brother. It seemed that they’ve decided that asking money from somebody else is an easier way to earn money.
I actually agreed with the conductor when he said “Ang lalaki ng katawan bakit hindi magtrabaho ng maayos” (They’re strong enough to work, why venture in this kind of “job”).
I often see such modus along EDSA but most of the time I encounter males. There is this one time that I encountered a female asking for money inside the bus but that instance I felt she was being real, that she really needed help for his son. She was wearing an office suit and was crying the whole time. I thought, if my son needed me to go do this, I would as well.
What are the odds of a mother doing anything as close to asking for alms to people she doesn’t know for her son? I told myself, I would do anything for my son’s sake, even if it means eating my pride.
I just hope people don’t use such methods as their bread and butter, there may come a time that passengers may not believe those who ask for help even though they really need the help.