The day I witnessed a crime

It was another long day at work. I had an unexpected presentation in the morning. I organized my teaching files the entire day. I administered my final examination to my last class. There were even issues that came in along the way. I was tired. Before I left the workplace, I felt that familiar sadness again, quarter life crisis that is. This time, my struggle is centered to this life changing decision I wrote in a previous blog post.

I walked to the jeepney station that will bring me to the train station. As we were approaching my usual stop, the driver accelerated to avoid the trap of the red light. I alighted almost a block away from my usual path.  I was forced to take the unusual walkway to the train’s station. I passed by the pavement of this terminal mall. The area was well lighted and elevated. Between my usual pathway, the elevated pavement was evidently safer. Unfortunately, what I thought as a safer place gave me an experience I will never forget in my entire lifetime.

I was halfway the pathway when I noticed a man running behind a couple. I initially thought that the man was just chasing another person. I never sensed anything serious and threatening. Everything changed when the man started to stab the couple. He started attacking the man. In less than a second, the woman was stabbed at the back of her left shoulder. The succeeding events were no longer clear to me. The only thing I can remember, the woman was already  lying on the floor and I was running  towards the entrance of the train station.

To be continued

Update as of October 25, 2014

The moment I saw the man attacking the couple, I started to leave the elevated pavement. It dawned on me, the man might be under the influence of illegal drugs. He might attack everyone that comes on his way. I was less than a meter away from where the stabbing incident happened. I might be his next target and victim. I ran as fast as I could. I can no longer remember how I was able to reach the entrance of the train station. Before surpassing the mandatory bag inspection, an old lady asked me if I saw the incident. I replied and realized that I wasn’t the lone witness. All my fellow passengers from the jeepney were witnesses and could have been victims to a heinous crime.

On the way home, I had my own share of panics and fears that came in aftershocks. The first that feared me was the possibility that the man has the intention to search and shut down all witnesses. I was the easiest to reach and recall because I wore a uniform. I pass by the area everyday. On the next day, I’m most likely to pass by the area at the same time. I also thought that since the incident happened within the premises of the mall, there might be CCTV cameras that caught all the witnesses. We might be summoned to become witnesses and I can’t anymore imagine the succeeding events.

As I go to sleep, other thoughts kept plaguing me. This was my first time to witness a crime that took away the life of another person. There were movies, drama series and true-to-life CCTV clips uploaded and shared in You Tube and social media. I was one of those people who felt pity for the victims and at some point, blame to the people who refused to help. My thoughts changed when everything happened right in front of my eyes. I wasn’t able to offer help because I feared for my life. It was my initial response and line of defense. I run away not because of selfishness. I also felt helplessness for myself. How can I defend myself to man whose motive and behavior I can’t understand. All I knew that time was I might be his next victim.  These were my last thoughts before I finally fell to sleep.

A few days after the traumatizing experience, I encountered this article from the local tabloid. A family member showed me the article days after I related my experience.

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Should I stay

Some weeks ago, the most awaited day of my documentation project finally happened. On that day, a pool of assessors conducted a full site visit at the workplace. On top of the visit, our managers and VPs were subjected for interview or what our President said, everyone was cross-examined. We somehow underestimated this day because the bulk of workload was just so endless. The assessors were repeatedly asking for supporting documents and evidences. It was our team who handles the production of the documents. Hence, every claim that our VPs and managers make bounces back on us. At some point though, I have to admit that some VPs and managers are making up stories during their interviews. We were pissed off but in the end, we don’t have a choice but to produce something from their artificial stories.

After the site visit, the assessors will review their findings and present it to the board of judges. We were told to wait around two months for the results. We are hoping for the entry-level certification. As much as I want to be hopeful, I already feel half-hearted about the results. I hope my colleagues will not be able to read this. I’m sorry but from my end, it’s not yet time for us.

Despite of everything, I’m still wishing that my predictions were incorrect. Part of me is wishing for that chance. Truth to be told, I told myself months ago that the outcome of my documentation project will give me the answers of whether I should stay or leave my current company.

If we receive the certification, I should stay.

If we don’t receive the certification, it’s time to leave.

Unfortunately, my overanalysis of my situation is giving me more problems. At the end of the day, I realized that the outcome of my documentation project does not lead me to the clearer picture of my decision.

If we don’t receive the certification….

I should leave. This already serves as my wake up call. I should consider working and growing in a company that offers better practices. It’s time to move to a better working environment.

This sounds as the most logical decision but deep inside, part of me tells me to stay. Maybe at this point, my company is at its low. Years from now, I want to become a part of its recovery. Hence, I should stay.

If we receive the certification

I should stay. My efforts are finally happening it marks another start for me.

Part of me however says that I should already leave. My mission is already done. I’m ending my employment on a high note. I also believe that it’s better to part ways with an accomplishment than a disappointment.

I’m feeling more lost and confused. However, I knew that having this feeling of leaving already confirms that part of me already longs for it.

I confess, I knew the reasons that confuse and prevent me to leave or make that decision.

  1. That evil emotional attachment – I started my career here. Everything that happened to me 10 years ago were made in my current employer
  2. Afraid to regret – If I will move to another company, I don’t want to experience those days when I have to ask myself, why did I leave? Everything was fine for the last 10 years. Why did I easily give up those 10 years of my life?
  3. Fear of the unknown – My few friends who left the academe for the industry have their own culture shocking stories. Most of them were surprised with the faster pace of work life in the industry. At my current age, am I still capable of coping?
  4. The interviews and entrance examinations – I remember my friend Grace who once told me that she has memorized all the employment examinations of companies. True enough. There are some examinations I encountered from another company that I found in another company. I have my own share of embarrassing stories about employment examinations. One is always getting eliminated with a pool of applicants. I don’t know if I still have the tolerance and knowledge to quickly answer those employment examinations.
  5. The almost most important consideration – Salary… If I will accept another job, my major considerations are the amount of salary and benefits I will be receiving. Obviously, I will never transfer to a company with lesser pay and benefits… even though the company has been showing signs of growth and success? No or maybe yes?
  6. My future colleagues – Will I still have the patience to deal with another set of colleagues?

I made this blog post while my dearest students are taking one of their major examinations. This reminds me, one of the things I would surely miss when I leave the workplace. If I will leave, it will take some time for me to return to teaching. It will make me sad… But then, part of me is already feeling the exhaustion. Maybe my overweight problems or lousiness can explain. I will feel sad without teaching, but I will not deny that my aging and overweight self needs additional time to rest.

So there, if you were kind and patient enough to read my long post, THANK YOU. I would appreciate unsolicited advices but please, no harsh words.

New Journey Series : Almost one down

I have a lot of sentiments to blog. Unfortunately, everything is just too disorganized in my mind. I’m still figuring out what to write among the following

a. to leave or stay with my current job

b. a recent experience with a superior who played a childish, immature and disrespectful joke on me

c. the regular occurrence of my quarter life crisis and how it was awakened again last Sunday

and probably, more that I can’t remember.

Setting aside the outpour of thoughts, I decided to focus on updating my New Journey Series. I remembered,  it’s been a while since I last updated this blogging series. The last time I checked, it was October of last year. It was almost a year since I documented my financial struggle.

Over the past months, I have been blessed with a lot of freelance works. If I’m not mistaken, I served three clients at the same time. The earnings helped a lot in restoring my savings account, purchasing a laptop when the old one decided to rest forever and most importantly, I was able to reduce a significant amount of my credit card debt. Hooray!! There are still debts to pay though. I have to work out balances from another credit card that is gradually ballooning again. The balance from the credit card I intend to maintain was significantly reduced. As of date, I would like to believe that I can trim down the balance from five to  four digits this month. A few more months and I will be able to totally eliminate the evil debt.

A technique I learned in eliminating debts in multiple credit cards is to focus on one credit card at a time. Assuming I have Php 10,000 today, instead of distributing the money to different credit cards, I should use the entire amount to eliminate one card. Killing one evil interest rate is better than distributing the antidote to everyone. The antidote only regulates the pain. It never eliminates the root source of the pain.

So there, please pray for me. I hope I’ll be successful in totally eliminating one evil in my life before the year ends.

In other news, my 10 year old insurance will be fully paid next year. Just one more year of paying and I’m all done! In response to this, I decided to venture to another insurance. I opted to diversify and choose another company for my secondary insurance. This time, I chose a foreign based company and acquired a variable insurance. Hopefully, the companies where I invested will become stable and successful.

I’m still less than half-way in beating my financial struggle. But I know, I will soon overcome the consequences of this mistake.