Imagine: an early summer day in the country, and you’re enjoying a view over a golden landscape dotted with the vibrant colours of wild flowers. The sun is warming your back and a light breeze eddies through the long grass. You’re rambling along the edge of a field, listening to the birdsong from the hedgerow, contentedly daydreaming about the lazy afternoon ahead.
But now – you have to climb a wooded hillside. You pass under the trees, and the canopy blocks the sunlight. No birds sing here, and the air is still. You venture forward, but you can’t make out a path. You turn to the right and then the left. It’s not clear which way you need to go. You feel a little anxious, and suddenly sense that someone is watching you.
There isn’t a word for this – so I’m going to make one up. I think being bewatched fits the bill. The watcher – who may or may not be there – does not have good intentions, and there’s the added possibility of being bewitched.
I think we also need a related term – that of being bestared. This doesn’t have the unnerving connotations of being bewatched. It’s more fleeting, as when you glance up and look directly as someone who has been staring at you.
I like these new words, and I’m looking forward to having the opportunity to make up some more. Hope you like them too!