Harrassed for a robbery attempt in KSA

 

Clinic rooftop

Last October 24, 2017 at around 11pm, I just had the scariest experience I had my entire life. I never expect it will happen to me during my stay here in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA). It never happened to me in the Philippines nor I experienced successful pick pocet incidents. Thieves may have attempted on me a lot of times but never succeeded as I have been so vigilant in things like this especially on places I expect it to happen. But the experience I had recently was never in my imaginations during my stay here. 

I am working as a nurse, specifically, a dental assistant most of the time and sometimes I am pulled out to Dermatology department or in the Emergency Room as the needs arise. lately, I am working in the morning shift and tend to sleep after eating every time I got home around 5 in the afternoon. I then wake up between 9-10 pm in the evening and sometimes go out at the little store (Bakala in Arabic) outside to buy something I need for tomorrow just in case I don’t have it in my cupboard. Well, I live on the 2nd floor of the same building as the clinic I am working.  

So that night, at around 10:50 pm I decided to head out for a while to buy a 2-riyal pasta at the store just adjacent to the clinic’s main entrance. I have been going out at this time since I got here ’cause I am confident enough to walk alone outside at 11 in the evening since the clinic is still open as well as other establishments around. A lot of people are still walking along the streets also. So after I got what I need from the store I immediately went home to prepare food for my double shift work on the following day. 

I started to walk across the road to head back to the clinic which is just right in front of the store too. When I was at the middle of road, on the concrete barrier between 4 lanes, where there were palm trees/dates grew; suddenly a teenager of apparently between 16-17 years old straight off tried to take my mobile phone I had in my hands along with my wallet. Thank God for the wisdom that though I was in panic mode, I was able to move and utter few words in Arabic for people to notice me and chased the robber who successfully snatched my phone after he tackled me at the middle of the road where we were almost hit by cars speedily racing along the streets as the green light just lit. It was difficult for my to see his face and where I would go as I have problems with light glares, I couldn’t almost see anything and all I see was car lights. he grabbed me by the neck by putting his arms around me so I couldn’t move; dragged me to the sidewalk and then managed to open my palms and took my phone and even attempted to take the wallet also. But I did my best and held it so tight that he struggled to take a grip of it. He only succeeded taking the phone and ran right in front of the Mosque next to the incident area. I kept screaming to call for help as I was running after the snatcher until good people came along to help and realized that I was being harassed for the robbery attempt. They held him down and I was able to retrieved my phone from another bystander who helped since the thief might have thrown it on the road [to avoid evidence if police comes] or gave it to his accomplice which was just also around the corner too [I saw him too!]. I was shaking while he was being held down and was asked few questions by a local who generously helped me. But when I got my phone back, I decided to walk back to the clinic to get away from the incident are which is just adjacent to the clinic’s main entrance. I never thought of calling the police to report, I just walked away. He was so lucky I was in a state of shock and wasn’t able to think of going to legal sanctions for the crime that teenager did that night. 

Women working in the middle east should be more careful especially now the economy hasn’t been doing so well, a lot of people have financial problems now which could probably resort to this kinds of situation among young people. To all women working here, we should all be very vigilant no matter how long we stayed here. Anything could happen at any moment. This is no safe place even of it is just 10 meters outside your workplace. When bad people exist, crimes could happen. Be careful everywhere you go. Open your senses to danger, and be alert if things like this happen. Wherever you are going, never be complacent; always take care.

#LifeInKSA #OFW #pinoyinksa #ofwinksa #womenharassment #bevigilant

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Better

While I was going over my email and scanning my messages, a thought of opening my wordpress account came along. I was thinking, I would post my Philippine vacation pictures right there and start a new mood on my blog since it has all been my drama outlet since I was younger. While I was reading my old blog posts, I can’t help myself laugh and at the same time being grossed out with my drama which I thought was the most devastating event of my life before. Well, I realized that indeed time and experience has changed me. My views in life have changed. The way how I respond to pain and rejection has been more convenient for me now. I have become a much different person than who I was 4-5 years ago. I can see how much in me has changed. I am kinda surprised on how much I matured in my own pace. So I have decided now to focus more on the positive outlook in everything tho pain, disappointment, and rejection will still be around but atleast I am more calm in handling them. I am more stable in handling stressful situations. From now on I will be writing more inspiring thoughts, a little drama would be fine in few ocassions but lesser than I was in college. haha! well, till here for now will be posting my vacation photos and the reflections I had way back when I was in Philippines. There is nothing more happier than having a time for yourself to grow and mature, develop potentials, build connections and good relationships, remove toxic people, treasure and keep the best of friends that may be few in number but it’s the most purest among all the people I have met. Thru time I have learned which ones to keep which ones to leave. For now, let us keep the good vibes coming.

Sweet Escape

That long curly hair, FotorCreatedthe smell of salt carried by the sea breeze, the warmth of sun, the glittery sand, the sound of the waves crashing to the shore, the unstoppable laughter with friends —-I terribly miss them all. Looking forward for another beach afternoon escapade with awesome people.

Bucketlist

1. Learn how to swim
2. Go snorkelling  – June 7, 2013 (Camiguin Island)
3. Own a dog – April 17, 2013 (I named her Margaux)
4. Go zipline
5. Parasailing
6. Shoot a gun
7. Learn how to drive car – May 2014 (with Uncle Gilbert as mentor, drove C3 Road from Steeltown upto Tipanoy, I felt so free! Haha)
8. Learn how to drive a motorbike
9. Own and learn to play the violin – May 2009 (RTC Learning Center)
10. Learn to play the drums
11. Win a videography contest – July 21, 2012 1st Place, IMCC Palakasak MTV Contest
12. Go on a solo out of town trip – August 2017/ Cebu & Davao Trip
13. Horseback riding
14. Drive around the city
15. Visit Japan
16. Have a picture taken with a thousand sunny boat
17. Be on national TV – February 2014 (The Ryzza Mae Show)
18. Buy my own motorbike
19. Smart phone – February 2014 , Samsung S3 Mini (Quezon City)
20. See a tarsier
21. Scuba diving
22. Dive off from a cliff
23. Feed a monkey
24. Buy a guitar
25. Learn the guitar  – Somewhere in 2010
26. Own a condenser microphone – October 10, 2015 (Mom bought me a Behringer C1-U Home Studio Microphone)
27. Make a song cover in full band doing all the instruments and vocals
28. Go to Greece and walk the long long stair of Santurini
29. Go on a landtrip from Manila to Mindanao
30. Ride Six Flags’s Zumajaru
31. Ride Dubai’s Ferrari Roller coaster
32. Picture taking with a snake around the neck
33. Make a beautiful painting. Haha
33. Swim with dolphins
34. Build a snowman
35. Fly a plane
36. Euro-bungee
37. ATV Driving –  2015/ Yanbu, Saudi Arabia
38. Watch a Sara Bareilles concert
39. Hot air balloon ride
40. Hellicopter ride
41. Sky diving
42. ..
43. Vacation on one asian country
44. Banana boat
45. Jetski
46. Sing in CCP (Cultural Center of the Philippines
47. Walk in the streets of Manhattan
48. Bike around Central Park, New York
49. Go on a ladies getaway trip – November 1-2, 2014 (Puerto Galera)
50. Try surfing
51. Give flowers to a stranger
52. Watch a movie in imax alone
53. Eat a box of 11inch pizza
54. Work out for weight goal of 56k
55. Hair dye aside from shades of brown
56. Try wasabe
57. Eat 2 slices century egg

58. Camel Ride – 2015/ Yanbu, Saudi Arabia

59. Eiffel Tower Paris Photo

60. Dip in the Dead Sea

61. Pyramids of Egypt

62. Ride a Tuktuk in Thailand

63. Legoland Malaysia

64. Eat original Beef Randang from Malaysia

65. Visit the “Freedom Scupture” by Zenos Frudakis

66. Visit the graves of famous musicians Mozart, Beethoven, Bach, Pachelbel, Erik Satie.

67. Great wall of China

68. Visit atleast 10 provinces/cities in Luzon

69. Eat original Ramen in Japan

70. Eat a Fuji Apple with Mt. Fuji on the background

A letter to Myself

Dearest Raisa,

Hi! How are you right now? I am sure you are not okay but I hope you feel better than the first time you heard the bad news. First, I would like to congratulate you for being alive today and trying to keep your sanity even though it has left you at times. At least, you tried borrowing from your friends’ sanity when yours are on siege. Didn’t you realize that it’s past a month and you’re still here and breathing? You are still able to work, eat, walk, talk with people though it’s kinda tough for you. But I am glad you’re trying your best to be strong. I know you have that weak monster inside that can eat you anytime, which can lead you to suicidal thoughts which invaded your mind many times and had one attempt a month ago. As your friend says, you should be ashamed of God and of yourself if you do it again, ok?

 

I know this was never easy for you. I know you never thought this could happen though you’re considering it at some part of your brain but you never thought it’s going to be this soon. He was your first love and you wanted him to be your last. Both of you tried to build your future together but some things just could not work anymore. Right now, you wake up every morning in a terrible nightmare of the fact that things just can’t go on like before. That you have to let him go. Just remember  quote you once read, “If you let go of something, and it comes back to you, it’s for you.” but never expect for it to come back, it’s way better if you get surprised one day that it came back rather than waiting when it’ll get back to you when it really won’t. According from a movie “Yang hope na yan, lason yan” (That hope [of you and him getting back] is a poison). At this point in your life, you are so desperate to get the hell out of the pain you are feeling right now. But I am proud of you for having to research well what to do, and for being open-minded.

As of this time, I would like to remind you to be strong. You’re life should go on without him. You are a strong woman right? You can do this, ok? Remember, sadness is not going to accompany you forever. THIS IS TEMPORARY. Put that in your mind and never forget it. Every time you feel tired, sad, lonely, or inferior, always remind yourself that you are a precious daughter of God and you are of great worth in his eyes. Just trust him always, never forget to pray. His timing is perfect, as well as his plans.

Now, I know you’re having trouble of self-esteem right now though many people see you as one talented person. Listen to them, do not reject their comments because they see your potentials. You can sing, play the piano, violin, and drums. See? that’s just one part of you! You have leadership skills, you are intelligent (you excel well in academics), you are friendly, you can be a party organizer, you can bake and cook well, you’re a fast learner, you are a teacher and motivator, you are outgoing, you are an amateur videographer, you can put your own make-up for formal events, you’re tall and beautiful with good skin tone, you are healthy, you are blessed. Those are just few of who you really are, there are a lot more of good of you.

Okay. At this moment, you have to stick on your “to do list” to move on. Do what you have researched and heard from friends’ experiences. Drew out strength out of them. Make them your inspiration. If you are not done with grieving yet, just grieve until you’re done with it. Then make the following steps you found to keep going: (from:http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2011/02/18/10-tips-to-mend-a-broken-heart/)

1. Go through it, not around it.

2. Detach and revel in your independence again

3. List your strengths.

4. Allow some fantasizing.

5. Help someone else.

6. Laugh. And cry.

7. Make a good and bad list.

8. Work it out.

9. Create a new world.

10. Find hope.

And remember to love again…

Once our hearts are bruised and burned from a relationship that ended, we have two options: we can close off pieces of our heart so that one day no one will be able to get inside. Or we can love again. Deeply, just as intensely as we did before. Henri Nouwen urges to love again because the heart only expands with the love we are able to pour forth. He writes:

The more you have loved and have allowed yourself to suffer because of your love, the more you will be able to let your heart grow wider and deeper. When your love is truly giving and receiving, those whom you love will not leave your heart even when they depart from you. The pain of rejection, absence, and death can become fruitful. Yes, as you love deeply the ground of your heart will be broken more and more, but you will rejoice in the abundance of the fruit it will bear.

 

Someday, you will get through all of this and you’ll just laugh at it. Never be defeated by the negative vibes. Keep the faith alive. Pray, be patient, be strong, and keep doing good to people around you. You will be okay, soon.

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A Birthday Message

Right now, I know we are living in our separate lives. But no matter how we ended up, I still thank God for giving me such a wonderful person like you. Yes, you are wonderful despite of your flaws. We are not perfect and we will never be. You may not see yourself as how I see you but to me you are a beautiful person. Thank you for giving me a chance to be a part of your simple and beautiful life. Thank you for making me really happy like no one else could do. I am sorry for the times that I demanded so much from you. I know your love language is different from what I imagined but I know you are trying. Thank you for all those times you were with me at my best and worst. The relationship we had was so special, it was one of a kind. I learned so many great lessons from it. Thank you for being so patient with all the complications we had. I am so grateful for the almost 6 years of meaningful and happy friendship. We may have experienced some pain all through out the process but in the end, we still manage to forgive each other and smile and hug. To some people, I may sound pathetic, but to me this is my way of thanking you for everything you did for me and for yourself too. I’ve seen you grow from the old you and I am very happy about that. I know someday we may lose our communication for some reason we still don’t know yet, but for me, you will always be special. May you and your family be abundantly blessed always. Happy 25th Birthday my tandem– Ace.

-This was supposed to be published on November 17, 2013 🙂

 

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