Being Watched

22 Aug

I just came across this note in my diary, dated 02/09/2009. I can’t remember if I was joking or not.

I think I’m being watched. Pousada 14 Bis is a very strange hostel. It has secret mirrors everywhere. I’m eating my breakfast alone in the dining area, yet I’m sure I’m being watched. Every now and again I will hear the crack of crockery on crockery. I eat another piece of cake, but feel guilty. What will they think, when they are watching? “What a glutton!” they must be saying to themselves. I’m just trying to fill up before a long day. I don’t think they understand. The wall behind me has six separate mirrors, they cover the entire surface. I know where they are. I take my time. They can’t rush me; I’m allowed to eat my breakfast in peace. I pour another cup of coffee. How good would a piece of cake be with coffee right now? I have another piece of cake. I didn’t realise they have fruit too. I have a slice of pineapple and some melon. I know they are waiting for me to leave. I thought I saw a reflection in the mirror. The cleaning lady walks past. She seems friendly. Maybe she was watching me from behind the mirrors. I can no longer eat. I get up and walk into the lounge. It is quiet except for a whirring sound. Maybe it’s the sound of a camera or tape recorder. Maybe it’s the sound of my brain. I scan the bookcase. Awful pulp fiction and romantic drivel, but there’s a Graham Greene novel, Our Man in Havana, I really want to read that. I think about taking it, but then I look behind; four huge mirrors, just waiting for me to swipe. I have to change my plan of action. Maybe I should get a camera. Take a picture of them. The watchers become the watched. It makes perfect sense. I take a shot, but it looks like me. It is me, it’s my reflection. I’m watching myself, this is the last thing I need, more eyes facing my way.

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