It was the saddest day riding the LRT that day. I chose not to remember the day. That experience was the sole reason why I always dread to ride the LRT. That time and year, the rail system was not as improved as it is today. It was hotter and older.
I do not know if this happens only in the Philippines but Filipinos that ride this train have that habit of squeezing and bulldozing to get ahead of the rest to be seated first. Respect is not a word known to these commuters even if someone got first in the line, or got early to be the first one in front of the train’s door. One must not be confident and dilly-dally stepping inside immediately once the door opens or he will find that there is no seat available anymore when he’s the one who was first in the line.
I remembered that day I had to ride the LRT. That was my first time. I had to go to some place to attend a seminar via the LRT. I was wearing a pair of sandals. Unexpectedly, the rush of people was sudden and my sandal was caught and I tripped. I was literally thrown inside the train sprawling on the floor, and like waiting for someone to lie spread out there with me. The other pair of sandal was missing at first but thank God I found it. I was too embarrassed to see if everybody was laughing but I managed to search, after finding my composure, if there were indeed a lot of people already laughing. There was none! I did wonder if that was a common scenario inside the train, or the group of people around me were just sneaky concealing the laughter.
Yesterday, I Had to Ride the LRT Again
I had to ride the LRT again. A group work had to be done for a department that is located separately from the main organization. As usual, the people were as notorious as they were several years before. I was not able to get a seat when I was even second in line. Poor me. Filipinos are hospitable they say but I am beginning to doubt it more.
Inside the train, I was able to position myself standing but holding the post. Beside me was a tall man wearing a polo shirt and he looked good in it. As the train moved, my body moved left and right as I was standing sideways. Unfortunately, my nose trailed a smell coming from the polo shirt. It did not smell good. It was like smelling a piece of clothing that was not dried right and probably was damp still when kept inside a drawer or a cabinet. I had to force myself not to move my face to the right. Suddenly, a smaller woman got in and positioned herself beside me. She was chattering and gossipy upon settling herself. It was another unfortunate instance when at some point I smelled something bad. She had not brushed her teeth and mouth, or maybe there’s an illness that was causing the halitosis. I had to force myself again not to move my face to the right this time. All through the ride, the woman was chattering nonstop until the other woman she’s talking to got off UN Avenue. It was not a good morning.