I really don't believe in Budol-budol operations until something like that happened to me yesterday.
Budol-budol is a scam rampant here in the Philippines. Those who operate this type of scam are called Budol-budol gang members. Their operations vary. It's when a complete stranger (most of them are sweet talkers, charismatic and really convincing) talk to their victim about offering something beneficial to the latter in exchange to money, cellphones or expensive piece of jewelry. This is done in an urgent manner giving the victim no time to think.The victim won't even suspect that he or she is already been robbed until the budol-budol member has left. Some even report that they've been hypnotized by the group.
In my case, Mr. Dennis (it's not his real name, of course) approached me yesterday offering me a small business. He used a famous brand - Pampanga's Best, a company known here in the Philippines for selling delicious processed meats (tocino, hams, etc.). He laid down the business plan in a piece of paper. It was convincing and I was already dreaming about my future profits. According to him, I just have to shell out one thousand pesos (P1,000.00) and voila! I got a great business deal! He actually also gave me an option to invest two thousand pesos (P2,000.00) for better and bigger profit. But I told him that was all I got at that point of time. So I handed the 1,000 peso bill. He haven't even shown to me a pack of the item I'm going to sell. I just let him walk away with my money. Then I realized I didn't have any documents that backs up his business proposal. Geez! Shame on me. I was scammed!
I don't think I was hypnotized yesterday. All I know is that I trusted a complete stranger and let him get away with my money. Was it Budol-budol? Or just plain supidity? Sigh. I think it's the latter. :(
Lesson learned? - Never trust strangers at all. Period!