#132: My Weird Day

Two really weird (perhaps even terrifying) things happened to me this day. Both happened just at the front of our house, while I was waiting for a tricycle to take me to Ateneo. Now the first incident wasn't really scary in any way - a lady just asked me if there were any vacancies in our compound and asked how much it cost. I told her to just copy the contact number (posted on a small sign by the gate) and inquire through the owner, since I really had no definite figures to give. After that, she went on her way.

The second incident happened just after the lady and her companion left, which is why I classified these two things as weird. Anyway, as I was waiting by the road, I saw this man (maybe in his early 30's or so) dressed up like a teenager, with chains and his cap placed backwards - singing and walking in a "weird" way. I fought the urge to look at him, since that might give him a false hint that I was open for conversation.
Well, I might have failed because when he was just in front of me, he stopped. This is how our talk sort of went:

Man: "Sino ang presidente ngayon ng Ateneo?" (Who is the current president of Ateneo?)
Me: (hesitant to answer) ...
Man: "Ah, si Viray. Ano'ng first name niya?" (Oh, Viray. What's his first name?)
Me: "Primitivo po..."
Man: "Ah primitivo. Mabait naman? Laging nasa school?" (Ah, Primitivo. Is he kind? Is he always at school?)
Me: "Opo, mabait naman po. Nasa school po siya lagi." (Yes, he's kind. He's always at school.)

By this time, I was already silently praying to God that either this man leaves (and doesn't harm me) or I find a tricycle to end our "talk". My eyes met his only twice, and I did my best to look as far away as possible. He was actually kind, but he seemed a bit "off" if you know what I mean. He was fluent in English, but he ate some of his words and he really had this creepy aura.

Man: Pwede kaya akong pumasok sa Ateneo? (Do you think I can go inside Ateneo?)
Me: "Hindi ko lang po alam. May guard po kasi lagi." (I don't know. There are always guards around.)
Man: Ahh. Pwede makita ID mo? Ikaw na ba bumili nitong case? (Can I look at your ID? Were you the one who bought this plastic case?)
Me: "Opo." (Yes.)

I knew it was dangerous to let other people know contact numbers and names, so I showed him my ID but covered everything except for the Ateneo logo at the top. I had really bad vibes from the guy!

Man: "Ako, hindi ko na sinurrender yung ID ko. Ginawa ko na siyang souvenir." (Ah, I didn't surrender my ID. I kept it as a souvenir.)
Me: "Ah, ganun po ba?" (Oh, is that so?)
Man: "Oo. Meron pa bang APO sa Ateneo?" (Yes. Is there still an APO in Ateneo?)
Me: "APO? Ano po yun?" (APO? What's that?)
Man: "APO. Fraternity. Meron pa ba non?" (APO. A fraternity. Does it still exist?)
Me: "Ay, wala po kasi akong alam sa mga frats sa Ateneo." (Oh, I don't know any frats in Ateneo.)
Man: "Ano apelyido mo?" (What's your surname?)

At that, alarm bells echoed through my brain. I thought, this isn't right. So i told him straight out that I don't give my surname to just anyone, especially strangers. He then asked me if he could see my ID just one more time. I refused, and he didn't persist, much to my relief.

Right that moment, I saw an empty tricycle and really signaled for the driver to stop. Perhaps he noticed my nervousness? Before I sped away, the man told me something that I didn't quite understand, but it sounded like he was wishing me luck - or something else. I don't know! Everything was a blur from the moment he asked for my surname until I got into the tricycle.

Now you guys might think me stupid, for letting a stranger talk to me for more than 5 minutes, and I don't blame you. But somehow, my curiousness got the better of me. As much as I wanted to get as far away from the man as possible, I wanted to stay and learn more about him, but with no intention of friendship and such. It intrigued me that this man, who was already in his early 30's, was still wearing a teenager's style of clothing, knew about Ateneo, was probably a student there, and conversed well in English. For all I know, he could've been really smart and went nuts because of it!

But now that it's over, I'm more in a wondering state. What if I had talked with the guy longer, and discovered something about Ateneo and a former student?