The story of the phone that was lost and now found

Not many people know this: that I get unconscious when I travel for long hours—precisely the reason why, for the past two months, I've lost two phones simply by taking public transportation. My pockets weren't even slashed; my phones simply chose to slip off.

If I were, say, in Tokyo, a missing phone wouldn't be a problem. The Japanese are too honest; they return things to the rightful owner without any theatrics. In Manila, news like that would make headlines in TV Patrol. When I got off the FX, on my way to Quezon City, I could no longer palpate my phone from my pocket. I knew I had lost my phone forever. 

A day later, I got an email from someone named Jonell:
We took the same FX yesterday from Manila. I found your phone in the seat beside me when you alighted at NBS [National Bookstore], and I've been waiting for any text or call from you. So I read your inbox (my apologies) and found your Kuya's number. I texted him, introduced myself and asked for any contact so I can return your phone. I was glad to learn you're an isko, and a future doctor at that. 
It will be a disservice if I don't return your phone to you, and I actually feel delighted to do this small act of kindness . . . You can email me back or text me so we can meet. I live in Manila, too, so I guess Rob Ermita will be an ideal rendezvous. Let's meet in the afternoon some time this week.
And oh, I have read some of your messages in my attempt to know the owner of the phone and used up your load to text your bro. I think that's the price you have to pay for having left your phone.
After reading it, I immediately tweeted:

I finally met Jonell—a friendly, jolly guy who speaks Ilonggo. To probe into him, I asked diagnostic questions. I later learned we had so many things in common. He studied in UP Diliman. I knew many people he knew: he was roommates with my friend, Gideon Libiran, at Narra Residence Hall. He also knew the people from my dorm. We live in a small, small world.

I praise the Lord for people like him, those who choose to do the extra mile for an act of kindness, without any expectation of return. My experience didn't exactly bring back my trust to humanity, but it made me realize that not everyone in the street—in this case, the FX—has the potential to strangle, harrass, or steal from us.


  1. I kind of laughed at this: "I think that's the price you have to pay for having left your phone." :p Like he's "tsk tsk"-ing you over email. Haha.

    Kindness is amazing. :)

  2. "Tsk tsk"-ing you over email (Lukban, 2010). Haha!

    Kindness is amazing indeed. Thanks, Lau.

  3. aww this is nice. something that should be posted at GMH. :)

  4. Thanks, Faye, but what's GMH again?

  5. haha. kilala ko si jonel na ilonggo na roommate ni gideon na taga-narra. haha. ex-physics student na lumipat ng masscom. :D

  6. There should be more Jonells in the world, or in the Philippines at least. :)

  7. Jeric Tugaff, this makes the story even more interesting. Ang liit na talaga ng mundo.

  8. Let's hope so, Macy. Or let's follow the example he's shown.

  9. hi lance, haven't visited your site for a long time now. good to hear there are still people who choose to do what's right.

  10. It's good to know there are still people like Jonell. I've experienced a similar ordeal before. That time, it was from an Ikot driver. :)

  11. Hi, Jeiel! Great to see you here. Oo nga eh, stories like this are very encouraging.

  12. I kind of glowed when I read this blog about me. Hi there, Doc :) I guess you got an Iphone now hahaha it's been a long time.


    1. Hi, Jonell! What a surprise! No, I still have the same phone—I've made so many memories with it. I hope your teaching career is going well. :)


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