The other day, I was walking through the city center with a girlfriend when a man approached me rather aggressively. He grabbed me by the collar of my coat and physically pulled me towards him, mumbling something in Russian. I reflexively shoved his hand off of me and made a scene to tell him to get away from me. At this point, he cursed at me in English and then started verbally abusing me in Russian. He proceeded to follow me, at a distance, through the city until I stopped at a restaurant for a lunch date. Whilst waiting for another friend to join, the man entered the restaurant, loudly ordered a beer, lit up a cigarette, and kept his offensive gaze on me. I messaged my friend to meet me elsewhere, packed up my things, and quickly left as he continued to verbally abuse me.
The hosts at the restaurant were confused and looked disturbed by the man. Their look as I left was apologetic. While I understand their confusion at how to handle the situation, I want to make sure that when I see things like this happening to people around me I make sure to stand up for whomever is receiving the abuse. I like to think they asked the man to leave.