Talking to Strangers!

As I’m walking up the hill talking to Dave, the kids across the street had yelled across and asked me a question. They run across the street, as something was terribly wrong. I could see the sweat pouring down their faces, as they were nervous for something to happen. They demand orders. “Whip out your phone, your money, your keys, and take off your sneaks” Irritated and startled I refused to give them anything “Actually, I’m good. I’ll keep my own things for myself”


Wondering what the next move was I stuttered when I told them to move, because we were leaving. As I pushed my way past them, one calls out “Do you know who your messing with?” I turned “No but it doesn’t matter, your in my past now.” As I stare at him wondering why his hand is deep inside his coat, he embraces a disgusted look on his face, as if he thinks I know something. Without hesitation, he shows it. A gun pointed, 4 feet from my face, terrified.


I have always been the type of person to think that anyone who talks to me wont hurt me. Random strangers on the street could ask me something and I would answer in a polite manner because I believed they were part of my neighborhood and I could trust them. From the day I could talk, I would be the first to meet my neighbors and introduce myself to everyone. A problem never occurred for me to be afraid of anyone, so why be afraid.


I remember my mom always repeating “In a situation where it may be life or death, there are no games to be played, no chances to take. You do what your told and give them everything.” Let me tell you something, when you are in a life or death situation do what your mom says. Me on the other hand, I did the exact opposite and turned them down flat. “Run you pockets” they repeated. Standing there watching them look unsatisfied I smiled and turned around on my again. Sensing something was wrong, I look behind me to see one kid pulling my pants down, searching my pockets for himself whispering “Ill find what your hiding”


Hardworking and dedicated to not one but three jobs at the time, I consisted of having around $60 with me at all times. I knew I had a good amount of cash on me, I just didn’t know how much. I watch as his face smirks when he feels the money, and rips it out of my pocket “look at what we have here.” Glaring at the money thinking damn, I worked for that money and now I’m going to let some fool take it off me. I see a chance and I take it. I snatched the money back out of his hand and laugh as though I had won the war. When they ask for their ‘share’ I think in my head and give them each $5 knowing they would leave with $5 rather than $0. To my credit, I was right, they left hollering things such as “Don’t tell your parents, don’t tell the police, we know where you live and who you are so don’t make any mistakes.”


Continuing on my journey, I begin dreading my next moves. The streets were empty, the night was cold. What to do next. We decide that it was best to just let it go because no one was hurt and that’s how we wanted to keep it. By the time we go to the end of the street and look back, they were gone, nowhere to be found. Police cars zoomed around the corner with only their lights on. Staring us down, looking to identify us, like something had been told. As we arrive at 7-11 and sit down on the wall, we see the teens our age being stopped and questioned. Above we hear the blades of a police chopper smacking against the wind with a hot spotlight beaming to the ground searching vigorously.

Later on we found out that the police were alerted by other teens our age that were also held up right before we were. It wasn’t until 2 days later, Sunday morning, which I had told my parents the story and the police were notified that we were also held up.