Daylight Robbery

Vol a table. It comes in many forms. In England the quality of the food sometimes and the service charge always is tantamount to daylight robbery.

 In Paris once  a bag woman once rushed in and took the steak from my plate,thereby giving a new meaning to takeaway food. In Jaipur, Rajasthan a monkey snatched my toast. In Ho Chi Minh City a beggar boy sat under our table  waiting for crumbs.  In darling Aberdovey a seagull snatched my sandwich and we can never forget the friend’s dog who came round and ate our Sunday roast before we had sat down. Our spaniel Nelson of course was in a voleur de table class of his own.

But on Monday in Aix en Provence I saw a new one.  We were waiting for the bus to Marseilles airport. Sitting on the main drag , nursing our drink and watching the world  slip by. I was thinking about how lovers hold each other and what it might mean.

There is the old fashioned  arm through the arm, usually the women’s through the man’s signifying  some kind of belonging maybe (mutual)ownership?. Then there is the more equal  hand in hand which although pleasant cannot  be done for long periods or distances as  heights and arm lengths vary. Then there is the total intimacy of his hand round the shoulder and hers in his belt or back pocket. Here we can only think of recent of soon to be carnality.

Then it happened. A street boy not badly dressed approached the tables of our café. He saw that someone had left the money for their drink and had left. He sat at the table. His  nimble hand as quick as any seagull or monkey seizing his prize. The waiter at the other side of the  the area spotted him and charged over,  mais l’enfant de trottoir a disparu. I am surprised I had not seen such an obvious theft a table before. Travel it really does broaden the mind.

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