This memoir is a piece I wrote for a writing contest I joined last September 2021 held by Scribblory. The theme was: “Anyone can write: Celebrating Life and Memoirs.” I didn’t make it to top 10 but being able to go through this memory again through writing was a great reward in itself. Dear reader, consider this memoir as a small gift to you. Enjoy!
“Oh Lord, please send me a miracle.”
When the lights were being turned off in the office, I took it as a sign to pack up and go home. With deep sigh, I straightened my formal office attire and prepared to leave the comforts of my desk. I was fresh out of college then, but you could see stress eating away at my youth.
My stomach grumbled.
If a growling stomach is a miracle in disguise, I wished God could’ve picked a better timing. Payday was still a few days away and my wallet was filling up with dust. Regret overcame me as everything I bought outside my budget danced around my brain. I really shouldn’t have taken the cab that day.
I was looking forward to going home and sleeping but the roads had a different plan. The city of Makati glittered red and white with cars creating a perfect gridlock. “Lord, send a miracle now please!” I shouted in my head – maybe I wasn’t loud enough the first time. I was tired and the buses wouldn’t pick me up. I was beginning to miss the cool office climate.
“Lord, send me a miracle!”
It didn’t look like the roads would clear so I decided to do what was unthinkable. Walk.
My apartment was only three kilometers away, and it’s better to move than be stuck. I walked because no amount of complaining would get me anywhere. I walked because I knew that miracles don’t just happen, they are made. I walked because I decided to be my own miracle.
But first things first! A miracle worker needs to eat.
The journey home was a real test. Picture an exhausted, hungry, and broke gentleman passing by his favorite restaurants. I had to fight the impulse of spending too much money for food if I want to survive the next few days.
Feeling hot, I took a detour in the supermarket. As I cooled down, my eyes ravenously feasted on their selections. They had grilled pork belly, fried chicken, barbecue, cold cuts, noodles, dumplings, and a variety of other dishes. I was salivating like a fountain. My heart skipped a beat when I saw a miraculous sign.
END OF DAY SALE 50% OFF: Whole Honey-Glazed Roasted Chicken
“Dear God! Thank you for the miracle!”
Little random surprises like these makes life worth living. The leftovers will last me until the next payday. It was closing time, so I had the chicken chopped and asked rice to go with it. Lining up at the register, I daydreamed taking a bite of the roast, tasting the honey glaze, and singing alleluia as I chewed. I couldn’t wait to get home!
With a spring in my step and a bag of delicious chicken on hand, I was prepared to face the old overpass.
The old overpass wasn’t scary, it’s well-lit and people use it daily. I only had a traumatic experience of being chased by a homeless child with a stick from one end to the other. It’s the shortest going to my apartment but because of that ordeal I always took the long way around. But not tonight.
“Lord, please not tonight! Not tonight!” I prayed under my breath, closely clutching the bag of chicken ready to make a run for it.
Many people were using the overpass that night. I noticed they all had the same expression of exhaustion on their faces. They walked at a briskly minding their own business. Everyone was just passing by – all of us victims of traffic. A wave of sadness suddenly came over me and I slowed down. Amidst the blur of crisp shirts and tailored coats, at the little corner of the pass, I saw the boy. But something was different about him.
He looked lifeless as he slept on a makeshift mat made of cardboard. His frail form was ignored by the busy world around him. Paying no attention to fear, I made my way towards the little corner. He was covered from head to toe with grime, flies camped at his feet, tear marks traced his cheeks, and his forehead was etched with wrinkles.
My heart ached for him.
Touching his shoulder, I gently woke him up.
“Hey kid, wake up, I have something for you” I said in a soft voice, holding back tears. He got up with a confused look on his face. Thank God! He’s alive! He didn’t ask questions, but his face asked them for him. I assured him that he’s safe with me.
“Have you eaten yet?”
“Not yet” said the child in a weak voice.
“Here, this is for you. All of this is for you.” My eyes welled up as I sat beside him and prepared a meal of whole roasted chicken with rice for him. I didn’t mind that people were staring at us. I didn’t mind my hunger and exhaustion. I didn’t mind that my clothes were being stained. All I cared about was how I could give back life to this boy in our little corner of the overpass.
He shared his story with me as I watched him eat. He was stuck and afraid in an unknown place without enough money to go back home. I listened and stayed with him for a while. Compassion moved me to give whatever I had left to help him reunite with his family. A child that I had once feared taught me how to truly love.
“Thank you, mister,” he said with a smile.
As we parted ways, I was overjoyed with tears uncontrollably running down my face. That night could have been like any other night, I went home with my hands empty, but my heart was filled with grace.
“Thank you, Lord, for sending me a miracle!”
This was the first time I wrote a memoir. It’s like preserving precious memories with carefully chosen words. Any ideas how I can improve it? I’d like to hear your thoughts in the comments!