There is a gypsy site just over the road from the supermarket and there are always a few waifs hanging around. They come and use the cafe and look so bedraggled and dirty that I have in the past exclaimed how sorry I feel for them. Not anymore!!
This morning there were quite a crowd of them and as I came out of the supermarket two of them started to follow me into the car park.
One of them who was no more than 5 or 6 walked behind me and pinched me on the bum!! which was obviously designed to get me to turn around. Huh…..they have to get up earlier than that as this girl is from London and learned a long time ago not to be easily distracted. I just pushed him away and he ran off but the other (who was older) was more persistent walking alongside the trolley grinning like a cheshire cat. I was more concerned about my bag than anything else and so was keeping a tight grip on that with one hand whilst trying to push him away with the other but he made a grap for some shopping and shot off with a tin of tuna!!
At that moment a security guard from the store came out and shouted and the kid threw the tin back at me and I have to say it was quite the shot as it landed straight back in the bag that he had taken it from!
Thinking it was all over I scurried over to the car and started loading up but when I looked up I saw that the guard was coming across to me with the lad and an older kid. I thought that they would just make him apologise but when they got to the car the older kid slapped the lad around the head really hard. I must confess to being quite shocked by this and cried out but they just dragged him away crying.
Wow…..tough love. Coming from a society where any form of physical discipline towards children is frowned upon I found the punishment maybe outweighed the crime but on reflection maybe a short sharp shock will stop him and make him think twice about doing it in future……or maybe it will just make him more careful not to be caught next time.
I guess I am an easy target as it is obvious I am not Portuguese and therefore not so likely to complain.
Either way my own personal security guard who has been somewhat lax about accompanying me shopping lately has now decided that it is not safe for me to go on my own and he will be escorting me at all times from now on – lol bless him
Never a dull moment here in rural Portugal 🙂
Ps – The cats are very relieved to know that their tuna was returned. There would have been much disgruntledness (not a word I know) if their stock take had come up one tin short!!