People watching

Last night Bee and I went for dinner at Gourmet Burger Kitchen. Bee does love a good chain.

The restaurant was entirely glass fronted, so we chose a table in the window, where, once we had run out of things to say to each other, we could amuse ourselves watching people loitering about outside, trying to decide whether to go for a burger or Yo Sushi.

About three minutes later, we were watching a woman on her own, who was spending an unreasonable amount of time looking at the menu outside. “Maybe she’s meeting someone,” I suggested.

“Nah,” countered Bee, “because then she wouldn’t be looking at the menu would she?”

“She might,” I said, “if she was just trying to make herself look busy.”

Bee didn’t look convinced. “To be honest,” she said, “she does look like the kind of person who’d go to a burger restaurant on her own.”

I scolded her of course, for being judgemental, but she did look like the kind of person who’d go to a burger restaurant on her own.

Our next victims were a couple, clearly in the early stages of a new relationship. As they looked at the menu, they held hands – the proper way with fingers intertwined – and every so often looked back at each other, smiling, as though a burger was just what they needed to seal their everlasting love. If it had been a film, now would have been the scene with the vaseline smeared on the lens.

As I predicted, they decided on burgers against sushi, and were shown to the table next to ours, in full view of me but behind Bee – perfect for enabling continued spying, but a little restrictive when it came to being able to talk about them. Still, we did our best.

They approached the table, and, hands still entwined, and the man held out his date’s chair. She smiled adoringly at him, in her mind clearly the most thoughtful, romantic man who ever lived. Their arms stretched as he walked to the other side of the table, and their hands reluctantly separated.

“Bee…” I stage whispered, my mouth subtly hidden by a giant onion ring, “he held the chair out for her!”

“Ahhh!” Bee swooned, “Sweet! No one has ever held a chair out for me.”

Clearly not happy at the brief lapse in physical contact, they were soon holding hands across the table, gazing lovingly into each others eyes.

It made me wonder.

When does that stop? And more importantly, why does that stop?

“Tbh,” said Bee, (she actually says the letters, t, b, h), “it’s a bit weird isn’t it? I wouldn’t do that in public.” Maybe not, but isn’t that everyone’s favourite part of a relationship, the ‘honeymoon period’, those early days when you can’t get enough of each other, when you want to be in the same room as each other all the time?

Or maybe when you find the right person, it never does really end. Maybe you get it under control a bit more, but wouldn’t it be great if you could keep that excitement forever? I’d like to think you can keep it, even if perhaps as more of a gentle bubbling than a fierce boil.

New Boyfriend is not so new any more, but secretly, I still always wish I could be holding his hand across the table.



  1. 27 August, 2011 / 5:29 pm

    I am not sure how I have gone so many moons without stopping by the best blog on the internet. Life and things seem to have gotten in the way of one of my favorite things to do, reading about your life. It seems a lot has happened since I stopped in last. Congrats on the ‘Not so new’ boyfriend. I’m sorry I never continued on with Winston the Camel, but he hasn’t left my mind. I have, however, written 3 novels since you sent me the last chapter, started the 4th in the series, published the 1st of the 3 and begun a biography of a local basketball legend. That being said, it is no excuse. Winston has been patiently waiting to find out what is next and I need to get him moving along on our adventure.

    As with all your posts. I loved it.

    • 29 August, 2011 / 11:38 am

      Brian! How lovely to ‘see’ you! :-)

      It hasn’t been the same without you, but given you appear to have, in the meantime, become some sort of famous, prolific author, I feel I should let you off. Glad to have you back though :-)

  2. 27 August, 2011 / 11:23 pm

    I love people watching, it often makes an otherwise dull or dismal day or journey that much more interesting, and to be honest ITS FUN.
    I have found often that it’s not what they are wearing or actually say that’s important, it’s those subtle little movements, innuendos of body l;anguage that say the most!
    And yes, I agree with you with the “first flush of romance” comment, why can’t it stay that way for longer!

    • 29 August, 2011 / 11:39 am

      It’s great fun isn’t it? It does make me slightly nervous though when I think of all the people who might be ‘watching’ me at any time, chuckling to each other about my choice of shoes or the way I eat my onion rings or something…

  3. 29 August, 2011 / 10:12 am

    Oh me too! I also love people watching. Lovely post x

  4. Suzi
    3 September, 2011 / 4:46 am

    aww – my first date with Mr R (now fiance) was in GBK…and we still hold hands across the table ;-)

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