Auf Deutsch

Sydney, Australia. On the bus, riding into work in the nightclub district, in my chambermaid’s uniform. I cleaned rooms in a towering hotel. Two German men sitting across the aisle kept sneaking glances. At me. I could feel it. It could not longer be ignored. I turned my head and watched them watching me. They conferred in German, oblivious to the fact I could understand them, and apparently, that I could see them: as though the language barrier was also a physical barrier I could not see through. One said: “That’s the most beautiful woman I have ever seen.” And the other replied “Me too.” It took all of my self control to sit still, to not fidget, not laugh, or smirk. To not blush. I kept my eyes straight ahead. I tried to comport myself in a manner befitting the Most Beautiful Woman. And I wondered if it was true: if I really am beautiful. Or if these two guys shared an unusual aesthetic. Or all of Germany did–a cultural thing. What even is beauty? My stop came, and I stood and disembarked, much more self consciously than usual, as they swiveled their heads and watched me walk away.

Published by msdeer

I am an interdisciplinary artist, slightly incognito here.

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