Saturday, December 05, 2009

The Mystery of Paul Santos

See me sitting there? I was waiting for something that day, but it never came.

I received a mysterious yet exciting text message that morning. It was from a certain "Paul Santos" who introduced himself as a businessman who was a fan of my blog and who really wanted to help me out. He said he had a tight schedule but would be flying in to Manila from a business trip in Hong Kong, and he was offering to give me 50,000 pesos. He told me that he would be arriving in the city in the afternoon and would only be available to meet for a short period of time just to meet my acquaintance and hand me the money. He said to meet him at SM North EDSA.

I was very low on money around that time, and his messages sounded sincere. I was also quite naive and gullible back then, so I decided to go ahead and take the risk. I left Zambales for Manila around lunchtime. I was so confident about the situation that upon arriving at SM North EDSA I bought a fruit shake using my last few pesos. I hovered around the main entrance for a good hour waiting for Paul Santos.

He sent me a text message once more, telling me that he had to make a necessary stop in the Roxas Blvd area and thus it would be more convenient if I met him at SM Mall of Asia. By this time, I decided to contact my good friend Simon to accompany me to SM Mall of Asia since I had no idea where I was going and in case something went haywire.

Simon and I arrived at SM Mall of Asia an hour later. We sat waiting on the second floor overlooking the large Christmas tree--at the very location you see in the picture above. An hour passed and there were no longer any follow-up text messages. As it turned out, Paul Santos never materialized, and I would never hear from him again.

Experiences such as those helped shape who I am today. I can't say that I am now completely free of naiveté--as there will always remain room for further growth and experience--but with the concentrated amount of powerful happenings I saw, felt, and experienced in the span of a couple of years in the Philippines, I believe I am certainly a person who is much more aware, knowledgeable, and skeptical about the things around me.

Also, this post is just one example of many, many interesting (and sometimes bizarre) happenings that occurred during my journey but was never revealed on the blog. You know, looking back, had a sponsor thought about actually video-documenting my actual day-to-day life during those two years (or perhaps even sponsored the time I could spend to write out all these long intricate stories), I think they would have ended up making a good amount of money (through a reality show, a book, or whatnot). But obviously that didn't happen; thus, the archive of untold stories remains stored in memories sheltered by my mind. Even to this day, that archive keeps on growing. There are many untold happenings occurring at this very point in my life (like regarding this December 2009 trip to the Philippines). And I'm sure there will be many during that trip itself. And you know what? Even this very story about "Paul Santos" is only part of one bigger story I have yet to tell (and even years since its happening, it may not yet be over).

Revisit the post First Taste of Manila. You may need to register to gain access. I don't usually edit old drafts, so when you read it, you will notice that I did not yet know the difference between SM malls (I thought they were all referred to as "mega malls").


Anonymous said...

aww...good thing you never met this person. my athletic and good looking nephew got several text messages fr a stranger who claimed she's a fan of his and that she's a friend of a friend. insisted that they meet at sm the mall of asia one noontime last may 20/07. WE NEVER SAW HIM AGAIN! in spite of all the effort of the NBI, crame, media, psychics...he just disappeared :-(

Anonymous said...

That Paul Santos is not really existing, he is a poser. (S)he using different names to hide his true identity.

evaengineered said...

Bringing your friend was the smartest thing to do. It probably stopped that certain Paul Santos from kidnapping you.

Michael said...

I think that Paul Santos just want to see you in person thats it, since or maybe he is an avid fan of your blog.
Just an observation..

Jepoi said...

Hey dude!

Are you still the rebel type like before? Someone who insist on resisting your world?

Jules said...

This is sad. He probably might be planning to kidnap you. Beware...

chichirya said...

Di na kita nabisita nitong bakasyon mo. Kakarmahin nalang kung sinumang poser na Paul Santos yan. Ingat David.

Anonymous said...

I have a friend whose name is Paul Santos.

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