Wednesday, May 7, 2014
Being asked for my ID by a corrupt/creepy ROP guy
The day was one for me to recover from working all the weekend. I stayed home to relax, but alas, had housework to do, so I wasn't wearing my best. Also, my foot was broken, so I was wearing rubber flip-flops (also great for mopping the floors). So when I was hungry, I was too tired to cook, so I set down the street to the coffee shop near my house wearing those same flip flops. Before leaving the house I tossed on an abaya, and a house scarf (coloured, patterned, long, and overly modest in length, covering all my body to my hips). I wore no makeup, no jewelry save my wedding band, and only my hands, and face were showing.
At the cafeteria I ordered my meal. I usually would wait in the little household goods store nextdoor while I waited for my order, but it wasn't open yet that early, and it was beyond hot out, I hid inside behind the pop machines at a quiet table.
Inside comes a plain-clothed young Omani male, just a little taller than myself, and boyish looking, and he 'salaams' me.
I reply underbreath so he can't hear, for Muslims have to reply to a greeting, but Omani dudes tend to take that as flirting so underbreath it comes.
I take it he knows the Indians or is the son of the owner as he walks straight back inside. When he comes back out he sits down beside me and starts to be all flirty in Arabic. I ignore him, and I know, I should get up, but the Westerner in me, is like, I was here first, you leave ME alone.
I tell him I don't want to talk and don't speak Arabic in Arabic (crappy Arabic that has no grammer).
He tells me I must be Lebanese and am lying. I am like, no, I am [insert nationality] and he pops out his ROP ID card and asks me for my ID.
I am so mad at this point, I could hit him. I have my id but I tell him I don't. I say it is in my 'beit' and I just came here to get food and leave. I told him my husband is Omani, and I am from such and such country, and so there is no 'mishkila' and he should leave me alone.
The Indians are watching, feeling sorry for me.
Legally, he can only ask for my ID if I am at a roadblock, or working. As a customer, he has no right, but I wouldn't be so pissed if I didn't know him to be squeezy, by his trying to flirt BEFORE flashing the id and asking for mine.
I could get him fired if I took his ID number, if he but knew that.
He insists I am lying and should go with him, so I wave him away like he's a fly and tell him I am going to eat, and if he wants to sit outside my house until my husband comes home, he can do that, but that won't be good for him.
He eventually leaves me and I roiling, boiling, broiling, over-flowing mad.
He thought I was a family-less housemaid or something, and I could see him taking advantage of some poor scared girl who doesn't know her rights or have someone to defend her.
Then the Indians made their dua. And after a while it made sense, for people like that creep will always take advantage of the situations of women who are poor or alone, and those who are rich will not know if people want their money or station, to take advantage of them elsewise.
It also makes me so deeply, horribly sad, that people such as that exist at all, because I could not see myself ever taking advantage of the weak state of another human being so utterly, and awfully. May the next time I meet that creep, I be wearing Louboutins in place of rubber flip flops, and be beside those he fears, ameen. May he get what he deserves, ameen. May he never hurt or take advantage of another human being, ameen. I hope he knows the fear and shame of those he'd oppress, ameen, else change and make right, though that I doubt.