Because my friend and I had to attend this forum about child molestation at the US Embassy. We were on the guest list so we didn’t have to enter through the gate for visa applicants, where anyone with a phone never made it past the first guard. I wonder why phones aren’t allowed in there.
The forum was very informative: in the US, about one out of every five girls and one out of every seven boys will have been sexually molested before they reach the age of 12. Twenty percent of them will have been sexually solicited online. The speaker, agent Maria Markley from the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, busted some widely held beliefs about molesters, too–they aren’t usually the loner, creepy types. Most of the time they’re community pillars–coaches, teachers, or hardworking, seemingly friendly neighbors who wear neat ties to work.
In any case, my tie began to feel out of place the moment we stepped out of the embassy, when we made our way to the LRT station in UN Avenue. It seemed out of place in the ticket lines at the MRT, in Jollibee where we had lunch, and on the jeepney ride back to the office.
In fact, in seemed somewhat out of place in the office too, where, just a few doors down the hallway, is a “fiscal control division” where indigents line up everyday for reimbursements and dole out.