A lesson learned in the Philippines

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 25 June, 2009, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 25 June, 2009, 12:00am

Last year, I went to the Philippines with my family. On the second day of the trip, we went to a small island and had lunch there. After lunch, there were some leftovers on our table. 'Let's feed the stray dogs!' my brother suggested, as there were several stray dogs loitering around close by on the beach.

As we did this, a local man approached us and said with an air of embarrassment: 'Can you please stop feeding them? We haven't had our lunch yet.'

I didn't get his meaning at first. Then he explained: 'I mean ... we eat your leftovers.'

My brother and I suddenly felt terrible. But, at the same time, I was touched because I realised the local people had served us the best food they had.

It made me realise how important it is to treasure everything around us. At the very least, we should not take for granted delicious food cooked in restaurants or by our parents every day.

Lam Yan-kiu, Tsuen Wan Public Ho Chuen Yiu Memorial College

From the Editor

Thank you for your touching and very well-written letter, Yan-kiu. It is very sad to think of people surviving on our leftovers. Millions of children all over the world go to bed hungry at night. Millions more face death through starvation. So we are, indeed, very lucky to be in a place like Hong Kong.

We need to always remember these people and never stop trying to make the world a better place.

Susan, Editor