Beggars , Buskers and Hookers !


Having lived most of my life in India , I am used to seeing abject poverty in India’s Urban and Rural areas.The only difference is that in Urban areas  Poverty , Opulence and Beggary co-exist but in rural areas, in spite of poverty , begging is less visible than cities.May be because people are supportive to each other or because of  lack of long-term donors.

Whatever , but I never imagined in my wildest dreams that I would have to confront unfortunate sight of degradation of human dignity in  highly developed part of world like Europe.I think that was my ignorance of realism in practical world.

Buskers at Roadside

My first such encounter was when I was travelling in metro between Euro-fermi and Termini Station in Rome , Italy. On Piramide station , one good-looking girl with fairly good dressing boarded the train.Then came her belonging which , on first sight , was looking like a trolley-bag but it was actually a music system with karaoke facility.She assembled and synchronized the music-data with output and then she was ready to “Perform”. I was completely shocked , not because it was a new thing for me but I didn’t expected it to be in a new and developed land.

Then there was this man on the traffic light who wore nothing but an underwear in such a cold evening and then I was totally convinced that problems of mankind are universal and uniform in the world.

Attention Sign Boards

Another surprising and interesting thing was the response of police to tackle hookers.They have actually installed signboards to make people aware about them who will pop out from the trees on highways and start selling their services.

Welcome to Italy !


7 responses »

  1. I had a little experience with street busking during my teenage years in the 1990s. I was 14 and in love with this girl that my parents disapproved. They kept threatening to throw me out of the house. My ego got the better of me, so one fine day, I walked out and with my girl, set out for Rostov where my grandparents had their dacha. The journey was over 20 hours and after buying the tickets, we didn’t have enough money to buy food. So on a station on the way, my girl got this idea – she stood at the foot of an overpass and started to sing a a mix of Russian folk and Bollywood songs (which were popular in the radio at the time). One of the passengers found this funny and was kind enough to feed us before we were on our way. An odd experience, but hardly a degradation of our dignity.

    • If this was a permanent arrangement for you and your girlfriend then It would be considered degradation of human dignity.One-off adventurous act of singing is actually not busking.Busking is unsolicited entertainment and is not a dignified act because it is followed by same act of begging with a bowl.And seriously , nobody seem to respect buskers much more than beggars.

  2. We have beggars, buskers, and hookers in Australia too. You’ll find buskers all over the central business district of Melbourne — and some of them are really good. We have all kinds of street performers roaming around to entertain people, especially on weekends. Prostitution is legal and there are brothels all over the city, including one on a very main road. When I was having lunch alfresco at a cafe in a trendy suburb with a friend recently, I was approached twice by guys wanting some “spare change”.

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