Every morning, children stream past our house in both directions on
their way to school. There are the nearly grown-up, very self-conscious
young ladies on the way to the inter-college, dressed in blue and white
with neatly plaited and be-ribboned hair. There are groups of
brown-and-white children, always squabbling over some snack. There
are tiny red-and-blue primary school kids who drift past like
tumbleweed—so easily distracted that it's a marvel that they ever make
it to school.
And then there are the troublemakers, the wretched blue-and-brown boys
who derive entertainment from pinching the valve-caps off our car tyres,
or snapping off the occasional windshield wiper. We stuck a webcam in
the window overlooking the car to keep an eye on these miscreants. It
worked pretty well. A few of the smaller children still write their
names on the windows when the car is dusty, but we haven't lost any more
But now the webcam has become a local attraction, and we hear children
of every colour walking past talking about the “CCTV”, bringing their
friends around to point it out, and waving or posing (or dancing!) for
the camera. A blue-and-white pair—not yet as serious as their elder
sisters–recently made faces at it and ran away horrified but giggling
when I replied with a cheerful “Hi”.
Ubiquitous surveillance? What fun!