Posted by: cochinblogger | August 8, 2009

Love in a City Bus

Public displays of affection are frowned upon in India. I remember sitting in a coffee shop one day, listening to an American at an adjoining table describing how in a local park, policemen had questioned a man and a woman who were entwined in each other’s arms. The couple protested that they were husband and wife, only to be flummoxed by the counter question: If you’re husband and wife, why would you need to do your stuff in a park?? The American was baffled by the behavior of the policemen. I’m not a sociologist, and examination of that issue will take an entire blog post anyway. But it’s related to something I saw in a city bus.

A couple were smooching in the last row of the bus, oblivious of the other commuters. They had eyes only for each other. It was such uncharacteristic behavior for Indians that I was amazed. It was when the man spoke that all became clear. His speech was so slurred, he could hardly articulate the words. And then I saw the near-empty bottle of alcohol in his hand. The woman was also swaying unsteadily. They looked like people who lived on the street. OK, so this was their day out. Perhaps they had something to celebrate. Whatever, I wished them well. They were still at it when I got out of the bus.

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