I have a voyeur friend who gets his kicks from watching people fuck. Or imaginging watching people fuck. We have one of those long-term flirts that simmer but never really boils. I sent him a text the other day...

Me: ‘Lying on the balcony naked soaking up the sun listening to some dave b staring at my little piece of blue sky and table mountain and thinking about many things, but mostly about lovers and then you, of course...’

He: ‘You have exceptionally lucky neighbours or a very well hidden balcony. Part of me hopes the former.’

Simmer simmer. He never takes the bait.

Nevertheless, I pondered that for a while. I specifically enjoy my balcony for the fact that there is private nakedness that can be had when I want it. For a town apartment this is rare. But the things I’ve done in full view on balconies with other people have spanned just about every polite sex act possible – blowjobs (him sitting), cunnilingus (me standing), penetrative sex (standing rear, cowgirl on chair), handjobs (standing, perfect for when the wall is just high enough, or solo play, sitting).

Either I’ve lived in the city too long or I actually do have a thing for balconies. Or, I’m just a closeted sexhibitionist, a kind of public-sex-without-the-full-exposure kinkster. I’d never really thought about myself this way.

But as I lay sunning my vagina (dames, if you have never done this, you should start immediately) I went through my public(ish) sex scenarios, flipping through the images as far back as I could remember: lots of road-side car sex, sex under a mango tree on a hill, sex in a public toilet, sex on a mountain, train sex, sex at a Buddhist monastery, riverside sex, party lawn sex, canoe sex, sex in a museum, sex in a yellow cab ... and then the other day I experienced my first public flogging.

In a small fire and candle-lit room, with an audience of about eight, Madame Rose suggested I try experience my whipping bare-breasted and hair up. It was fun, it was sexy, it had an element of theatre, it made me want to get feathery nipple caps and take up Burlesque.

Which really makes me wonder about the nature of watching and being watched.

Public sex is the act of sexy time in any public or semi-public space. The kicker might or might not be the risk of being caught, but the element of possible observation is ever present. Whether you’re watching it – like the suit in the chauffeur-driven Jag next to our taxi or the nosy old neighbour on the adjacent balcony at my ex’s apartment – or doing it, public sex is a give and take affair.
And why wouldn’t it be. There’s a bit of voyeur and exhibitionist in everyone.

Public sex, porn, stripping and its more subtle sister Burlesque are just the obvious aunties of the party. We load our lives onto Facebook and send our partners boob pics.  Aren’t big cars, flashy clothes and designer wear all just a sort of peacocking exhibitionism of perceived self-worth? Isn’t ogling the rag mags and pointing out the desperate lives and flabby thighs of local plebs and celebs really just a kind of sad voyeurism? We get a kick out of public pointing and posing ... so why not poking? You say you don’t necessarily want to hear me shagging amongst the Fynbos in Kirstenbosch? I say I don’t necessarily want your grotesquely large Hummer taking up three lanes on a small two-way inner city street. I’m just saying.

I don’t know. Maybe I’m trying to justify what appears to be a developing kink of mine. It’s so awkward when these creep up on you. Look, I don’t think I’ll be running around flashing my genitals to passersby anytime soon. Not even on my balcony. No, that sort of thing is reserved for nude gatherings, orgies and Sandy Bay. But I will be making a list of further places to engage in situational coitus. I have a few obvious ones like 'beach' and 'plane' to cover.

Who needs a bed right?

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