That moment when someone stole my Nikon DSLR

It was the last day of my family trip. We went to Korea first and then we transited to Shanghai and thought it would be cool to join another tour in Shanghai. We shouldn’t have, bad things happened.

At Shanghai Pudong International Airport, I was waiting for my plane back to Singapore, while trying to use Baidu (China’s Google) to find out why can’t I use Google in China.

I turned to my right and my camera bag was missing. Then, I turned to my left. It’s still missing. Where did it go? Did my mother took it? I looked at my mother, sitting right opposite me. Nope, not with her. Who the heck took it?

Immediately I informed my father, whom just came back from the toilet. He didn’t take it with him, he left it beside me.


My camera bag, containing my 5-month-old Nikon D5500, two 32GB memory cards, a memory card reader were gone. It’s all gone.

My parents and I ran towards the airport concierge, informing them about our loss. Nope, they didn’t see it. Nobody returned it. Someone stole it.

Then, I realized that whatever was happening was really, really real. I pinched myself. Yup, it hurts. This is real.

“Fu-” I wanted to blurt out all the vulgarities I had in my head, but restrained myself for some reasons. I cried. Passersby looked at me. My tears overflowed uncontrollably. My heart hurts. My camera was gone! All my photos were gone! 2000 of them! All gone!

I cried to God. Why did someone take my camera? How can you allow the person to even live on? How can you even allow this to happen? My memories are now all gone!

Then God reminded me: No, my memories are kept safely in my heart. My best experiences are all recorded in my mind. Although I don’t have the physical proof of it, at least I remember them in my heart. Plus, not everything was gone- I backed up a few hundred photographs in my tablet after I went to the church in Korea.

I stopped crying, realizing whatever I did was so selfish and materialistic. It was my own fault, I was careless and didn’t look after my own belongings. Plus, I was so concerned about my camera, I blamed God for the incident that happened. I shouldn’t have, He already planned it to happen. It was a reminder of how I shouldn’t treat my possessions as something more important than respecting God and His decisions.

Immediately I became numb to the pain I was feeling. My father went to make a police report while my mother and I went back to the benches we were sitting at.

My mother, whom doesn’t know God yet, asked me to pray to God.

I told her, “If someone does return it, it is good. If the person doesn’t return it, it’s okay. We have to move on. We have a flight to catch. Wait for papa to come back and we’ll go to our flight gate.”

My father came back. I told him, “Dad, it’s alright. I’m not sad about it anymore. We can just get a new camera.”

He looked at me, with sad eyes, still saddened by the incident.

And that’s when he said, “I wonder if the travel insurance can be claimed.”

I stay silent and shrugged. My heart was at peace. I didn’t really care if the camera will be returned or not. I just hope it will be well taken of by its new owner.

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