Wednesday, September 08, 2010

The Case of the Stolen Thank You Card

Receiving an e-mail from my uncle today reminded me of this case which got me and mum all riled up about a month or so ago. It was a simple act of thievery by a naïve kid but it made both of us so 'freakin' mad!

After coming home from our trip, I wanted to thank the whole family for being such great hosts to us. So it took me about 2 weeks to make 'thank you' cards for each family unit. Mum's job was to fill them up and post them as soon as possible.

As always, with her busy schedule, it took another 2 weeks (and lots of nagging on my part) for her to do her part. What she failed to tell me was that one day, while she was teaching English in another class, one of her students went through her bag and stole a few of the cards. When mum discovered the cards were missing, she hollered to the class asking who had taken her cards, and this little girl quickly hid them under her desk. Mum saw the movement and asked her whether she took the cards, but the girl denied it at first.

When the kid saw that mum was losing her patience, she finally gave in and surrendered the cards - altogether 4-5 cards out of the 7 that I'd made. The little thieve had written her name and messages on two of the cards.

When mum told me a few days later (after posting the undamaged cards), I was so MAD! If the kid was in my reach, honestly, I would have slapped some cow sense into her and given her a piece of my mind about stealing and lying at such a young age! What I can't comprehend is why did the kid think that going through someone else's bag and taking what's not hers was a perfectly normal thing to do!?! Out of the 22 odd kids in the class, only this brat stole the cards - what does that tell you about her upbringing? I wonder whether her parents ever taught her about morality?

Anyway, I don't feel like going to in depth with what was going on in my head all those days after I found out. The sting has lost its venom after a month (now). I just hope this kid doesn't grow up into a shoplifter.

For a week I refused to look at the extent of damage done to the cards, although mum kept asking me to repair the cards. I felt violated because I had sacrificed my sleeping hours and had put a lot of TLC into these cards - only to be defiled by the grimey hands of that brat. Mum said she had never been so angry at a kid before and was controlling herself not to slap the girl.

Below is one of the damaged cards. However, I'd already erased the words written on the cover when taking the photo (but the pencil nib traces couldn't be undone - so I had to 'transplant' everything onto a new base card). All the envelopes were beyond repair, so we threw them away and got brand new ones.

Ironic: Stealing a card to apologise to a friend for stealing something

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