Non-fiction books


Put down your phone and watch people

Posted by Yvonne Barlow on Monday, January 9, 2017
I love travel - whether it is on a local bus or a long-haul flight, travel gives me the chance to watch people. However, I'm amazed at how many people gaze into their mobile phones rather than ponder the stream of humanity that passes them by. We can read so much about strangers' lives - or at least I can.
The group of three on a train - two girls and a boy. One girl starts to crack her water bottle loudly whenever her friend talks to the boy - is she trying to drown out her friend's words? Is she a little jealous? The scene was in Germany and I couldn't understand the words spoken, but the group certainly had my attention and I watched all the mannerisms until I learned that yes, that boy was sought after by both.
That woman who looks amazing, and I peer at her, wondering how she tied that scarf so perfectly and where she bought that handbag - until I see that her hands are larger than I expected. She's sees me watching and I have to look away.
Sitting in Central Park, New York, I watch a man, a woman and a little girl walk toward me. The man is in the centre, body language tells me that the child does not belong to the woman. As they get close, the little girl jumps in front of her father, "Carry me, daddy, carry me!" He stops walking, looks at his little girl critically and says, "Walk or you'll get fat!"
No argument, that's a child who will need counselling when she gets older.
So put down those phones, watch people - Solitaire and Candy Crush cannot possibly be so interesting.

Tags: "people-watching" "candy crush" solitaire  "watch people" "mobile phones" 

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Yvonne Barlow Editor and people watcher. I love non-fiction and the ex-journalist in me believes a good novel can never match the human story.