In our new regular feature, deafies tell us about conversations they have ‘overseen’ (see what we did there?) in public, through lipreading and picking up on body language. Our first deafie tells us about a couple she oversaw while eating in a cafe…
I’d just sat down with my coffee and I was waiting for my boyfriend to arrive when I saw the couple sitting in the corner.
I could tell straight away something was wrong, even though the rest of the cafe was totally oblivious to it.
The girl, in her early 20s, was looking at her boyfriend intensely. While she was sitting leaning forward towards him, he was leaning back in his chair, unwilling to make eye contact.
She kept asking him questions. Short questions that challenged him. He’d give longer, drawn-out answers, still not looking at her.
I caught only a couple of things they said.
“There’s no point asking.”
“I want to know.”
In the end, he did look at her. He said something, looking into her eyes, that I didn’t catch. Then he got up, put his hand briefly on her shoulder, and walked out.
She stayed there for what seemed an age, but was probably about two minutes, gently crying, before she left herself.
Then my boyfriend arrived, and I realised my coffee had gone cold.
Do you have a story to share about something you have overseen? If so, just email firstname.lastname@example.org
The Limping Chicken is the UK’s deaf blogs and news website, and is the world’s most popular deaf blog. It is edited by Deaf journalist and filmmaker Charlie Swinbourne.
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