The Kenyan Nomad

The Kenyan Nomad

Friday, June 6, 2014

#YesAllWomen: My Turn

Normally, I don't tend to participate in huge social media movements that purport to change the world (think KONY). Many a time, people get caught up in sharing and liking and tweeting to such an extent that they forget what the movement or cause was actually about, if they ever even knew in the first place. However, #YesAllWomen is a rapidly growing movement that is raising awareness and telling stories of individuals too, and that's what I hope to do here. Does it literally mean 'all women'? No, not really. But are the stories applicable to most. Yes, definitely.

The other day, by which I mean two days ago, I had come back from NYC and was waiting at the train station for my aunt to come and pick me up. I was walking aimlessly, when a man came up to me. I've been approached by strangers before; to ask for directions, to tell me I dropped something, and many such similar situations. However, in this case, my instincts told me something was up because this man didn't seem to understand the concept of personal space. Also, he was rather unsteady on his feet, and took a while to formulate any sort of sentence. Turns out, he didn't speak much English, but did say something along the lines of 'you me'. Uhhh. Weird. I got on the phone and made some lingually unambiguous gesture toward it in the hopes that he would see that I was busy, and leave me alone, but no such luck.

Eventually, I went to stand with the railway cops, who told me the man was slightly drunk (unsteady on his feet. right. got it) and that they would keep an eye out. He eventually disappeared, and I breathed a sigh of relief. It was broad daylight, there were plenty of people around and it wasn't really that much of a big deal, but creepers makes me uncomfortable enough.

Now, keep in mind that this guy was shorter and scrawnier than I am. I told myself that if need be (which it probably wouldn't have been) I could 'take him on'. Later on, however, I realised that this was probably completely untrue. Yes, I may have been physically strong enough to do it, but the thought of voluntarily causing someone harm doesn't appeal to me (no matter how much they may deserve it). Despite the fact that the man made me uncomfortable, I tried to deal with it in the most polite way I could; by avoiding direct confrontation.

Usually, I wear a ring on the ring finger of my left hand; not because I'm engaged, but because I'm genuinely fond of the ring and it's the only finger that it really fits on. Of course, it's come in handy in some situations, and I remember thinking to myself that if I had had the ring on, maybe he would have left me alone much sooner, thinking that I was engaged/married. And then I stopped. And thought. And thought again. Apparently it's true.... #YesAllWomen

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