11 HUGS, 5 children, 5 adults (1 husband, 1 mother-in-law, 1 sister-in-law, 1 Whole Foods employee, 1 Walmart employee)
Every time I travel back home to the northeast US, I always anticipate the worst, you know, crazy drivers and rude people. Usually this proves true. People don’t smile at each other, manners are seldom used, etc. Well, this time, I would be hugging. Oh boy. After a morning in rush hour bringing hubby to the airport (finally), the crazy drivers had already tracked me down. So, how would the people respond to my hug requests? I started off “easy”. Whole Foods is found around the country and the employees are generally happy, kind and helpful. I left there with my first non family hug of the day.
Next up? Walmart. In the north. I walk up to the counter where a teenage boy with greasy black hair is working. Nah, I can just skip this one place. Then, he did something remarkable. He was talking so sweetly to the old lady in front of me and even patiently waited for her to finish gathering her bags before beginning to ring up my purchase. This common courtesy is often not even found in the south. Shame on me for discriminating. I complimented him on his politeness to which he responded, “well, that was my grandma, she would have been upset otherwise.” Awwwwww….. Before he knew what hit him, I marched right around that counter and asked him (very politely, of course) for a hug.
I left there wondering, perhaps it is not the north with the bad rap. Perhaps it is me and my perceptions. Have I, in the past, always expected rudeness therefore that is what I got? Unfortunately that is all too possible. I may have been robbing myself of the kindness of strangers by simply not being open to it. Fortunately, I can do something about that. I am so guilty of thinking of discrimination in a matter between races, when in actuality, there are so many forms. I for one am guilty of the location discrimination. I often think that people who live in certain areas are a certain way. I vow to change my ways. I vow to be open to kindness, joy and love from wherever or whoever is offering it.
Please accept this blog as my virtual hug to you.