@ Monday, October 17, 2011

Do you feel safe on public transport at night? Nope, not anymore I don't. There are too many odd people around - and by odd I mean the social outcasts, with regards to the behavioural determinate. Namely people who say they haven't eaten in days, living on the streets and asking for money - but when you offer to give them the address of the soup kitchen (free food for the homeless) they're like no...

After class, 8pm and after going to dinner (alone) on my way to the train station (2nd time taking this line), a women, 40-ish, looking like she's from PNG or slightly middle eastern, wearing a black jacket approaches me. Running wasn't an option, esp with the luggage. She said she was being abused (has bruises - though they do look self inflicted), went to the police and they said they'll arrest her husband tomorrow when she goes to the city station (umm... that's open 24hrs...), he took all her stuff, she's been living on the bench for days and has no food. She asks for food. Nice story. But you stink of alcohol. Fine, I'll play nice. I gave her a sandwich (in a Tupperware box - it was cut up into cubes), though she asked for money, which I said I had none.

Mr Legal '09-ish once said, when a homeless people asks for money, it's often for alcohol, do NOT give them money - you're not helping, give them a sandwhich - that'll also test if they're a liar, a scammer/con-artist.

I leave for the station - as I didn't think she'd follow, next time I'm going to hide in at a cafe. She later appears on a 2nd attempt to ask for money, I kinda ignore her. But two girls talk to her, playing concerned citizen. When the train comes I run for another carriage, and a lady who was on the platform also gets in, to avoid the woman in black. She then asks if I gave the woman money, and tells me they're a lot of weirdos around on the trains at night, and not to give them money. The sob story of the abusive husband and police not helping is a classic. We both hope that the woman would not come into the carriage we were in. Fortunately four officers were on the train, and soon arrived to check tickets, but amidst the issue of the woman they didn't and went to talk to her, she got off at the next station - and I hope that's the last we'll see of her kind.

A few months back, there was a guy on a weekend afternoon (daylight) train that was saying he was hungry and wanted money. A lady offered him an apple but he said no, I offered him the address of the soup kitchen, no interested. Just wants the money, for alcohol most likely. As a true homeless person, would take the apple and address.

Will not be taking late trains from now on. And will be learning to drive next year (though I will be avoiding steep roads). Jas always drives me to the station nearest to me (30mins away from him) and insists when I say I can take the train, perhaps this is the reason why he insists?

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