Last week I received a txt from someone I met in a hawker's center. I came to know him while ordering a set meal of a quarter fried chicken, coleslaw, and french fries together with the soup of the day. First time I saw him he was in full smile and I don't know if he recognized me as kabayan or he's just being friendly. I sensed that he is kabayan but I am not sure so I asked him if he's one in a guarded tone. He jolted upon hearing the word and sabi na lang kuya??! ako naman ang nagulat kasi though he look young at 25 and because of his height di pa naman ako katandaan. While I was seated just in front of him and waiting for the food, he keeps talking to me in a loud voice. Since I assume that no one understand us, I do the same thing. On our not so convenient conversation, I learned from him that he is new here just over two months. That he is being discriminated by his co workers as he is earning higher than them. That he is having difficulty in his job and staying in his uncle's place far away from his work place. That he paid equivalent to two months pay for him to get his job here. That the job offer he got in pinas was an assistant cook in a restaurant, contrary to his present post which is server and cashier in a small foodstall in a hawkers center.
He sms me to let me know that he just lost his job, just on his third month because the stall he was manning closed shop. His employer already canceled his work permit and channeled his last month pay to his local recruitment agency. The agency deducted some outstanding amount which he was not aware of and ended up getting only a few hundreds. Now he is busy looking for job and he must find one within 30 days. If not he has to go back to pinas. Given the current situation here, it would be very difficult now to find a job. But he has to find job here since the amount he paid in the agency in pinas was a loan and is not been paid yet.
In my current job, for now things seems to be alright. Tomorrow the contractor will start building our site office and has given a month to complete and make it operational. Once completed only then they can proceed with the work. The contractor has given two years to complete the job, it could be longer than that since my previous project site got a year extension. As my current job assignment is a government priority project, maybe I should not worry.
Well just maybe, for now.