On Saturday my wife and I went to a local mall to get some birthday presents for my youngest daughter and some clothes for my eldest. It was a great opportunity for us to have some time together (without kids) and for me to have some ‘Daniella time’ as well. So we sent the kids off to their grandparents for the afternoon and we went shopping. What an eventful trip it turned out to be.
Feeling pretty in pink
We arrived at the mall just after 12 and decided to have a light lunch first. On the way to the restaurant we noticed a strange smell in the air. we then saw the very upmarket jewelry store was filled with a strange smokey atmosphere and strong very bright lights were flashing in the store. It was filled with serious looking men in dark suits. We were convinced that there had been a robbery. On arriving at the restaurant my wife asked about events at the store. We were told, ‘no, there is nothing wrong, that is all very normal’. Yeah right! Within half an hour the smoke was cleared, the ominous looking men in dark suits had left and the store was open for business.
We had a lovely meal. Just as we were finishing a couple came in and sat at the table next to us. They were fashionably dressed, but something just seemed ‘odd’. I looked a bit closer. The female half of the couple was very ‘girly’ but had quite big features with quite wide shoulders. She seemed to be wearing clip on earrings (I was looking at her from a slight angle and she mostly had he back to me). She was, I thought, slightly over dressed for lunch at the mall (but then who am I to talk): high heels, very smart skirt, and her hair was a little unkempt, almost like she was not very expert at doing pony tails. In fact, it reminded me of the way my daughter’s hair looks when I do her pony tail for her in the mornings. Her hair was also a little high at the top, suggesting a wig, maybe? None of this on its own said anything, but taken together it made me wonder. I tried not to stare or say too much as I didn’t want them to feel uncomfortable.
After lunch we started ambling around on our way to do the shopping. We stopped in at a department store as I wanted to show my wife a handbag I had seen a few weeks before. As we were walking through the store someone stopped me and said: ‘Don’t I know you?’ I panicked! Who was this? Where did I know her from? Who was she? Was she talking about boy me or girl me? Had I just been outed? She then said, ‘from Facebook…’ relief. I looked at her. It was Sharon! Another transgender/crossdresser friend from Facebook. We had chatted on Facebook before, but never met in real life. It was so nice of her to come and say hello. It certainly took some guts, what if she was wrong? Then again the chances of her being right were pretty good. We chatted for a bit. I would have loved to ask her to join us for a drink or something, but as we were on a bit of a deadline and I was still recovering my composure I didn’t. Maybe next time!
We carried on doing our thing and looked for clothes for my eldest daughter. We stopped in at another clothing store and we were walking through the women’s section when I noticed an older man, rather shabbily dressed wondering around rather aimlessly. I thought he must have been waiting for his wife. A really pretty red bra with black lace in the lingerie section caught my eye and I went to look at it. They did not have my size so I left. As I was leaving the lingerie section I noticed the man again and then I saw it! He had a green shopping bag partially covering his groin, it looked a very unnatural position and a rather uncomfortable way of carrying the bag. With his one hand he was stroking the women’s clothes and his other hand was down the front of his shorts and he was furiously tugging away at himself. What a jerk!
My mind started racing. I was deeply offended by this activity. Fortunately my wife didn’t notice because she would have been very upset. It was clearly sexually aggressive and inappropriate. If I child had seen him s/he would certainly have been negatively impacted. I didn’t know what to do. On one hand he wasn’t (yet) being very aggressive and touching anyone else, only the clothes. Should I do anything? I thought of calling security, but then I thought about my attire. I was wearing a floral skirt, false breasts, a wig, make up etc. Would they believe me? Who was more likely to be arrested for being a pervert? Even if I was believed and not myself found to be ‘suspicious’ I would have to explain who I was (providing proof of identity: awkward), why I was there etc and if it ever came to court I would have to give evidence. I could just see a defence lawyer having a lot of fun with me and my character. So I chickened out. We just left with a sense of outrage.
A friend from Facebook later suggested I could have phoned the store and told them (anonymously) what was going on. That would have been a great idea but I just didn’t think of it at the time. I was really upset. Especially in light of my experience at a different mall a few weeks ago where a grandfather clearly felt threatened by me (you can read it here: https://daniellaargento.wordpress.com/2015/01/16/christmas-shopping-fashion-disasters-and-getting-clocked/). People behaving like this are a serious problem. It makes all of us look suspicious and ‘dirty men’. Like I say, I acknowledge he wasn’t actually harming anyone but I do not think this sort of behaviour should be tolerated. I am all for tolerance provided your behaviour does not negatively impact on others, especially the vulnerable members of society. Next time (let’s hope there isn’t a next time) I will think to use my mobile phone.
Later I wondered if he had clocked me? Maybe I had provoked this action? Was I to blame in someway? I really hope not. Anyway this sadly ruined an otherwise lovely day out and about. Nonetheless, no crowd with pitchforks and torches gathered to chase me down the street. We were just two women out for lunch and a spot of shopping. We happened to run into a friend and sadly experienced some of the sexual aggression (bullying) women all around the world deal with every day. This one (slightly) negative experience will not deter me from expressing myself. A luta continua!