I was on my way home from an errand one evening. Just a few blocks from my house I could see a group of three teenage boys hanging out on the corner. I knew they were trouble. I didn’t slow down. I didn’t want them to know I was scared. It was too late to turn around.
So what I did was cross the street to avoid them. But they were watching me and waiting for me. They crossed the street and started to follow me. My heart was pounding. I was so scared. They started whistling at me and calling me names. They said to me “Come with us pretty girl, we can make you smile.” The street was totally empty. There was nobody around who I could call on for help! I walked faster but they were right behind me.
As I turned the corner I could see a store open. I ran as fast as I could and got inside. As soon as I got inside the store I felt better. I was not alone and there was a shopkeeper there. “Please help me,” I said. “There are boys out there and they are chasing me.” He looked outside and shouted. But they had run off already. He called my brother, who came to fetch me and I got home safely in the end.
This situation was definitely scary but I learnt 3 important things from it:
- Don’t travel alone late at night. Always try and find a friend or older family member.
- Avoid dark streets that are empty and quiet. Always try to stick to busy areas where you won’t be isolated.
- Be a tech savvy traveller. Use your phone to call or message people if you feel like you are in danger. On apps like Whatsapp you can share your location with people so they know where you are.
- Lastly, don’t pay attention to people you don’t know talking to you or harassing you on the street. If you find yourself in a similar situation to me, don’t let fear overcome you. Think quick and act fast.