Yesterday I was walking from the Michaelertor past the Albertina to work. It was around 4.30 in the afternoon and I was minding my own business, keeping my head down and not paying much attention to the people around me. So it happened that I didn’t notice the guy who was walking past me. I didn’t pay attention to him at all, other than walking a bit more to the right side so we could pass each other easily.
So you can imagine my surprise when that guy suddenly turned his head, took a deep breath and full on spat into my face.
I was completely shocked. His spit was everywhere. On my face, in my eyes, mouth, hair. I just stood there, desperately wiping my face. There was no one directly next to us, and if people down the street or on the other side of it saw, they didn’t say anything.
While I was standing there, the guy never stopped walking. He just kept going like nothing happened.
The worst part was that I still had to get to work. While I washed my face in the lady’s room I still had to work for five hours before I was able to go home and properly shower. At home I scrubbed my face almost raw in the shower.
Now, I have several questions:
Why does this happen? Where did we go wrong that we now seem to live in a society where people on the street do not greet each other anymore but spit in each others faces? Is it education? The upbringing? Is it the parent’s fault? Can anyone be blamed?
On the off-chance that the guy in question is reading this, I ask you: Are you proud? Did you walk away patting yourself on the shoulder like “Yes, I just spat a random girl on the street in the face. Today’s a good day!”? Are you keeping count? Was I the only one or were there others? Do you get a sense of accomplishment and pride out of it? Do you feel better about yourself?
I didn’t necessarily take this incident as something against me as a person. I’m utterly disgusted and just so, SO confused. Why would anyone do this? What would bring a person to just spit in another one’s face?
Why is it that treating people with kindness and politeness is so rare? So rare, in fact that if a person you don’t know is polite to you, you cannot help but wonder “What do they want from me?” When did we get so hard and bitter?
I refuse to let this change me as a person, but yes, it opened my eyes. It was a wake up call, certainly, but I cannot, will not and don’t want to change who I am, because of other people’s actions.