I know nothing about parenting really, simply because I am not a mother. But, as an aunt, I know a little about babysitting -closest term to parenting- which would be my guideline to treat kids properly.
It was around 10 p.m. when I was sitting in JJ Royal Brasserie, a cafe-turns-into-lounge-bar for late night drinking, with a friend. Right across our table, I was fascinated -well, more of shocked- with a scenery of a man who was smoking cigarette blissfully in front of a kid while he was playing game joyously on his tablet. My presumption: I was seeing a father and his son.
I know nothing about parenting really, but what I do know is *when* I have kids, I will never take them out past 8 p.m, especially to a place like that (see photo above) where people smoke everywhere, super loud music (they were blasting filthy remix music, ugh), tipsy people, a lot of swearing and other inappropriate words, etc. It’s like putting a missing piece of a puzzle with a piece from a different puzzle -it’s just so wrong.
The scene then getting weirder because the father went for a while, probably going inside the cafe or restroom, and left that kid alone. Dude, I’m gonna tell you, that cafe/bar is a shit-hole so you could not leave your kid, whatever your reason, alone, in the middle of strangers. I kept looking at the kid, well, at least I would notice if something undesirable which later potentially becomes parents’ worst nightmare might occur.
5 minutes, the father hasn’t come back yet. I kept secretly looking at the kid (or openly? I forgot). That kid kind of noticed that I (or we?) looked at him constantly. He began to sit uncomfortably and seemed annoyed by me looking at him. The next thing he did shocked me even more. He took one cigarette from his father’s pack, and lit it (not inhaling, but more like lit a candle), and put the cigarette to the ashtray. Not long after, the father came back. Probably it’s a sign of red code to this father or something, or a sign his father told him to show people that the kid wasn’t alone, I wasn’t sure. And then the kid talked to his father, I suspected as, “Dad, that woman (and man) keeps looking at me!”, because that man instantly looked at us (specifically me) so I stopped looking around like a kid predator even I know the fact that I am not. I was just making sure the kid is supervised. That’s all.
We were like, “WTH?!”
I know nothing about parenting really, but it’s really hard not to judge this kind of thing. So when my friend told me that place is bullshit, I kind of like, “Yeah, OK, let’s get the hell out of here.”