Yesterday I was at a cafe which my husband and I frequented every weekend. Its a simple cafe with a cosy environment. Every weekend Cal and I promptly go there, sit at our corner table with the bench and chat for hours over the best iced tea in the city. It has been our routine since a while now. And I look forward to it every single time. Yesterday as we sat there talking, I was constantly distracted by a young crowd in front of me. Well not distracted, disturbed would be the right word to use. To start of, they were sitting at our usual table while we had to sit elsewhere. But that was not the only thing that was bothering me. Till now, I do not understand as to why I was so disturbed.
It was a group of four. One guy and three girls. None of them could have been over sixteen. The guy included. The guy was seated on the bench with one girl on either side and the other in front of him. All of them spoke in the local language and tried to behave normal. But to my eyes, there was nothing normal about them. They were kids, whiling away their free time in a cafe; but that was not what it seemed to me. The first girl, the one with a mole on her right cheek, kept swallowing one ice cube after the other from a glass. When I looked at their table I saw that it was loaded. With Appy fizz, Diet coke, some sandwiches and packs of cigarettes. There also was a tall glass filled with ice cubes and nothing else. The girl kept popping it into her mouth one after the other and the glass was empty within the next ten minutes. Is that normal?
The second girl, with the bright pink lipstick on her dusky face kept fondling the guy and kissing him. Before I could crib about over enthusiastic PDA, the third girl with the chubby cheeks leaned forward to kiss him. I almost dropped my drink in horror. The guy seemed to be enjoying all of it. At least, his smile said so. The first girl then lights a cigarette and lets the smoke out right into the guys mouth which is now open wide. I smelt the smoke, it was normal cigarette smoke and not dope. Well, thank God for small mercies in life. See, I have no problems with smoking. Girls or guys. I have tried all of it too a while ago, just to see what the whole hype about it was. In my early twenties, I just tried and then let go. But the scene in front of me was something else altogether. Excuse my use of words, but the first term that came to my mind when I saw the scene was 'Gangbang'.
I did not see any phone around at their table. Nor did anyone fish one out of their bag. Soon all of them lit up cigarettes and kept passing it from one person to another. Yeah, just like passing the parcel, but with every player having a parcel of their own. They laughed and spoke at length as the guy's hands shifted from one girl to another. None of the girls seemed to mind though. They were all dressed decently. Why, the third girl wore a salwar kameez and had oiled hair. They did not make excessive noise or laugh out loud. No, nothing suspicious. But something about them was not right. The first girl suddenly butts her cigarette and sits up straight and pulls her T-shirt at her back to make it super tight in the front. The guy immediately feels her breast as if measuring its size as the other two girls looked on with a wide smile. My eyes popped out that minute. The look on the guy's face said it all. He felt like a hero.
She straightened out her T-shirt as the guy proceeded with his measuring act on the other two girls. They obliged with glee. More cigarettes were lit and passed and more ice cubes were consumed. Just when I thought that the act was finally mellowing down, the second girl puts her hand inside the guys shirt and starts feeling him. The third girl puts his fingers into her mouth. The first girl rests her face on his lap. Face down. I was too scared and shocked to notice as to what she was doing there. All this in public, mind you! Well the compound of the cafe would not let the passersby on the street see it, but the whole of the crowd inside the cafe were witnessing their sutra act. After more cigarettes and kisses, all of them walked out after paying their bill. They went Dutch, I noticed. Their body language was free and unapologetic. As they walked away I could see the hard bound notebooks inside their bags and their pencil boxes. I said a silent prayer.
I do not know what was happening there. I did not know how each of them were related. I do not know what they were talking about. In the forty five minutes that I watched them, I felt sorry for their parents and the non-motherly instinct in me got stronger. Maybe the generation gap has got wider since I passed my mid-twenties. Or maybe the world is moving too fast. I do not know what it is, but one thing is for sure.
With everyone wanting to be a part of the "in" crowd, innocence has somehow lost its way today.