Sexually harassed in 4 countries, part 4

United Arab Emirates

Part 1, part 2, part 4? You’re wondering if I know how to count. Yes, I do. It simply isn’t part 3’s time yet.

This is my favorite one of all. I was older, living by myself, working in Dubai. Being a Muslim country, they have certain practices they observe. Being recently independent and a non-Muslim, I was blissfully unaware of the special supermarket timings on Fridays until this one fateful mornafternoon.

It’s Middle-Eastern hot, somewhere around 45 degrees C, sometime around 11am-12nn. I leave the house to take the bus to the supermarket. The bus arrives every 30-45 minutes, and unless you know the schedule (I didn’t), you’ll have to wait a while.

The bus stop is a glass box that’s supposed to be air-conditioned. The AC wasn’t working, so you either sit in the booth and pretend it’s a sauna or you stand outside. If you’re Pinay, you probably have an umbrella to shield yourself from the sun. I did.

I get to the supermarket and it’s closed. Given all the trouble I went through to get there, I decided to wait it out. Another back-and-forth trip in this heat WAS NOT worth it! Luckily, there’s an ATM booth nearby and, like everywhere in Dubai, it’s air-conditioned. A few others show up and we wait together. We don’t talk.

Finally, the doors to grocery heaven open. I get a cart and start shopping. A few minutes later, a guy comes up beside the cart. He’s one of the ATM crowd. He starts touching himself through his gray slacks. What a lovely sight!

I was drinking from my water bottle at the time. My immediate reaction was to douse the guy with water. Maybe I was trying to exorcise his demons. I hope I aimed for the crotch, but I don’t remember. The colors and material of his clothes made it hard to hide the fact that he was wet (just not in the way he was hoping for). I continue shopping. I don’t see him after that.

That’s the only thing I remember happened to me in Dubai. But there are groups of women accosted by groups of men at the beach. They get you when you’re in the water, diving down and grabbing your ass, boobs, vagina, or the harasser’s preferred combination. If you’re lucky, you simply get photographed while you’re sunbathing on shore. Sometimes the photographers will make it look like they know you and you’re at the beach together. If you’re even luckier, you just get masturbated to from afar.

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