He smiled at me and I smiled back in the awkward way strangers do when their eyes meet. We were standing side by side in a crowded Nyabugogo-bound bus.
For a second I fancied him, but fully knowing that all he could ever be is “that handsome stranger that I saw on a bus.” It seems that he read my thoughts and decided that the memory I had conjured up wouldn’t do.
So he brought down his filthy uncouth hand to my behind and squeezed it. And when I looked up, he had the audacity to give me a suggestive look. I was so overwhelmed with outrage that my thinking process froze and I was dumbfounded.
Once I had calmed myself down, I started hearing voices in my head discussing the way forward. “See? This is why you should always carry a grenade. It would have come in handy. Anyway, just punch him in the throat. No.
Break his hand. No. Bite it till he bleeds. Wait. What if he has AIDS?”
In the end, I decided that I wasn’t going to cause a scene. He had violated me and hurt my pride. I wasn’t going to let strangers bear witness to my humiliation. In the end, I settled on glaring at him.
He looked away but not before he expressed shock at my reaction. He got off at the next stop although I doubt he was anywhere near his destination. I’m glad he had the sense to leave.
I wish I could say that this is the first time someone has touched my body without permission as if they own shares and expected me to be happy about it. But then again I have had to put up with so many unrealistic expectations just because I’m single.
So dear people of the opposite sex, this is to inform you that just because I don’t have a ring on my finger, it doesn’t mean that I’m everybody’s. Stop behaving like every male (married or unmarried) has the right to me-my time, my space, my body.
Stop expecting me to pleasantly (and gratefully) allow you to waste my time with empty flirtations. Stop expecting me to supply unearned affection. I shouldn’t have to be ‘easy-going’ and always, always accessible.
I’m not a public good. Just because I’m single, it doesn’t mean that it’s my job to service and accommodate your mediocrity and lack of decency.
In the end, you don’t even want to commit.
As I conclude, I would like to congratulate the stranger on his failure to introduce himself. It’s an oversight in common courtesy, yes, but he’s one lucky fool. If he had introduced himself, I would have now hung him out to dry. I pity the next fool who does the same thing.
And oh by the way, this is real life, not some Hollywood movie. A smile is just that- a smile. It’s not a booty call, unless of course it’s coming from a lady of the night. (Yeah, I know; misuse of the word lady). I would want to think that nothing about me gives off such a vibe.
I think I’ve said enough.