Don’t know why but whenever I need to think – really think – I need to go to a cafe place. Somehow the noise of the plates, the constant human murmurs, the smell of the coffee and chocolate cakes, the coming and going shadows by my eye sight calms me and seeds ideas.
So today, I needed to think. As a result, I quickly found myself at my favorite place, which gives all of the above ingredients for my brain to collect and process the data.
However, my initial ideas flew away as soon as I entered and my thoughts instantly started to wonder towards a different issue: why is this place so packed during the middle of the day?
I mean really FULLY packed. It is certainly a cool place to be in the city and if it would be Sunday, I would not even wonder, but for life’s sake, it is only Wednesday. What is going on?
So, since I learnt a new activity from a ‘what to do in L.A.’ magazine a year ago, I sat down and started to do PEOPLE WATCHING.
Yes, I can imagine your face, if you hear this for the first time! When I first came across this term, I found it absolutely ridiculous, hilarious as well as dreadful. What the hell should I watch on people? It is so embarrassing for both of us. And why is this an Activity at all? Why to watch if I am not on a men-hunt? Who to watch then?
So in L.A. I definitely dropped this option out of the offered programs, simply because I had better things to do: e.g. actually get to know the city.
Now, a year later, things seem to change. The city I live in is not new anymore, so no pressure to ‘get to know it’. Time is many and nothing is rushing me to leave the place tomorrow. And lastly, I am having more of a self-discovery time that requires lots of alone-time.
So, now, a year later, I sat down with my coffee and started to people watch. Started to taste to meaning of the concept. And I have to admit; it’s not so terrible after all. Moving from face to face, table to table; trying to find out what they do, what they think, who they are. Hm, maybe, I just need to practice a smoother eye moving, so not confuse watching with starring. Yes, this was just awkward now…so I glanced away…
This whole thing starts to be really entertaining and bringing me back to my childhood, when I played Sherlock Holmes– like games with my Brother. We would just get on our bicycles and randomly pick people walking in the street and follow them. We wanted to know where they go, what they do and why. We hoped to discover that actually they belong to the Mafia or were just about to rob into a flat. So we would catch them and become heroes. Easy, isn’t it? Our fantasy just played and wandered until it was dinner time…
This people watching activity is somewhat similar. Except that I don’t have to ride a bicycle but sit in one place. I look around and without turning my body I can easily absorb thirty people around me. A group of girls, a group of boys, a girl alone, a boy alone, a couple(?), and the rest fall under the uncategorized status ordering by the bar. What is common in all for first- sight is the age-range: somewhere along 27 – 37.
So my first question is bluntly: Aren’t they supposed to work?
This is definitely the so-called active working age group according to my knowledge. Or am I missing something?
So what is going on here? I need to turn to see whether the people behind me at least would be elder people and children, allowing me to re-phrase my question.
Oh, no. Things seem even worse. Behind me are more or less 50 other people comfortably sipping their coffees or beers (!); and guess what, they are all young as well!
And before you would ask, no, they are not tourists. You can tell it.
So, my question must remain as it was – no chance for re-phrasing: Aren’t they supposed to work?
Oh yeah, I missed a point: it is not lunch time either.
So here are my options to chose from:
– either they all have a super-flexible-paid job;
– either they all are on vacation;
– either they all are very aged University students;
– either they all are on fake sick-leave;
– either they all are freelancers;
– either they all are CEOs;
– or either they all are UNEMPLOYED…
I am surely exaggerating a bit, since it can be that the whole group is the mix of the above. Still, don’t you think it is a bit wired that a cafeteria have a Saturday night ‘get out for a drink’ atmosphere on a working day around 3ish?
(well, I just caught someone exercising the same activity as me: we ‘people watched’ each other…)
Yes, I hear you and yeah sure, your question is justified: what am I doing here at the middle of a working day? Well, it is not a secret and I already disclosed to you, but here again: I am a self-reflecting unemployed, who employs herself to pursue her life desires. (Shush, I missed this option out of my above list, please add it there).
Yet, again. If we are all unemployed here then there is a HUGE problem and I would kindly ask all the headhunters of the city to gather here and collect all the CVs – I assure them, they would gain a great database. But if they cannot make it this time, then I would kindly ask the relevant Ministers and Commissioners to join us for a coffee and face with the unemployment problem face-to-face.
(oh, finally a mother with a little child entered …they certainly sticking out of the mass)
I am not sure I will able to make a clear conclusion for my question. But one thing is sure: I have never thought to find this many of us here today – and I would definitely not find a similar situation in my own country… and it defiantly remains an open-ended question…
(ah, I just caught the man part of the ‘couple’ making selfie, while the women part of the ‘couple’ is chatting on her phone – this could surely be elaborated further…maybe next time….)