Boorish behavior

Obolon district. Kyiv.

The lady behind me in line at the supermarket kept tapping my bag, accidentally, I thought.

I was in a good mood and felt more shocked and amused than irritated. She seemed to be with her husband or lover. He was whispering softly to her in Russian. I guess her tapping was supposed to be a hint that I didn’t grasp. Eventually, she shoved me from behind.

I turned around, shocked. She raised her chin defiantly. The man immediately grabbed her and moved himself between us. He scolded in in the same gentle, lover’s voice.

The line was unusually long and slow — late night rush. Eventually, she shoved me again. I think she felt frustrated that I wasn’t crowding the person in front of me.

I turned around and again the man put himself between us, and lectured her. I did too. I told her I was a foreigner. That in America people don’t push each other. She waved her hand dismissively and said something like “move along America.” Her man continued to gently berate her in a lover’s voice. He said something like “this man came all the way from America to visit us and his is how you’re treating him.”

Pretty pathetic behavior from an adult. I was on my way home from Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and therefor in a good mood. I was more stunned than anything else.