McDonald Boy

When I read this post on my friend’s Facebook, it touched me so deeply that I asked her if it’s ok to share it here with everyone. Let me introduce my dear friend, she’s very smart, she writes eloquently beautiful – I really think she should become a writer – she’s a proud mother of two…her name is Erita Mann and this is her story:

A Child’s World (The Boy Who Begged For Food in The Street of Jakarta)

I spent three hours from 9 AM to 12 PM today staying with my son on his first trial day on Pre School. I watched him studying in the classroom, I watched him playing in the playground,  I watched him having lunch with other kids his age. I also watched all other kids happy faces while they are playing, studying and eating. I saw no sorrows, I saw no problems, I saw no fears, I saw no hatred. All happy faces with smiles enjoying their childhood. That’s what being kid is all about.

I was sitting on a bench at the school playground during break time watching the kids playing and my mind was wandering of a lifetime experience I will never forget…

It was around 9 O’clock at night, the traffic was pretty bad on Jl. Gatot Subroto (one of main street in Jakarta). A little boy about 7 years old knocked on the window of my car. He’s a beggar, singing a song I could not  understand the lyric. With no doubt or fear I rolled down my car window so I could hear his little voice. When he stopped singing I handed him a Rp. 10,000 (about $1). He shook his head weakly and asked if he could get the McDonald’s meal box I put on my car’s dash board instead. He said he is hungry and only had one meal that day. I froze for a second, trying to absorb what I just heard.  I then handed him the meal that I haven’t touched and reached for a Rp. 50,000 bill from my purse. All I could think of was giving him more money. He refused the money, he said he’s just hungry. I told him to take the money and put it on his almost ripped pocket shirt. He smiled, he bowed and thanked me then he walked away from my car. I was watching his back as he walked away just to realized he had a big hole on the back of his dirty looking shirt and he’s barefeet.

I cried quietly inside my car, all alone.  Feeling hopeless not being able to help that child more. While other kids are snuggling with their parents at home or sleeping peacefully, that boy is working at night, singing songs from car to car in the busy street of Jakarta and only had one meal that day. I have never seen that boy again since but I could never forget the expression on his face when he told me he’s hungry and would rather have McDonald meal than the money.

Life is not fair for that boy. While he supposed to be loved and enjoying his childhood and not to worry about what to eat , he has to work from day to night, trying to survive in the cruelness of a big city like Jakarta.

Tonight my son is sleeping quietly in his room, and tomorrow he will be ready to explore another great day in his life. The boy I met that night eight years ago will be eight years older now. Wherever he is, I hope he is in much better situation and condition. God Bless you child.



  1. October 30, 2010 / 12:45 am

    This post here is why you must keep blogging. No matter if you only post once or twice a month.

    You bring the world to us. So many people in the USA close their eyes to these things.

    We need awareness made “real”, like your post here does.

    You are very important in my blogging stops, MO.

    THank you for opening our eyes, time and time again.

    • October 30, 2010 / 5:52 pm

      Empress, your comments always warm my heart and makes me feel love. Hope you know you have that power not just towards me but to all the other bloggers you visits. Thank you so very much!

  2. wien
    October 30, 2010 / 4:56 am

    uh reen, aku terharu T_T
    thanks for the wonderful post T_T

    • October 30, 2010 / 5:53 pm

      Iya gw juga pas baca sampe menitikkan air mata…thanks for reading Wien!

  3. October 30, 2010 / 2:43 pm

    Nicely written post, I was in tears reading this post

    • October 30, 2010 / 5:54 pm

      Erita is a very talented writer, I wish she have a blog. She just shared other story of street children and that too put me to tears. Will share it next week.
      Thanks, Ecky!

  4. wanda walker
    November 1, 2010 / 6:26 am

    Yes I agree. Erita is a talented writer, I wish her the best..

    Thanks for sharing this on facebook..

    • November 12, 2010 / 9:26 am

      Aunt Wanda, thank you for stopping by and commenting. Love you! 🙂

  5. November 5, 2010 / 7:14 am

    We have a lot to be grateful for. Thank you for this story.

    • November 12, 2010 / 9:27 am

      So true, Serene. This kind of post reminds me that no matter how hard life seems to be there are still others esp children who lives a hard life.

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