blowing kisses and waving at strangers

I had tea yesterday morning at Cuppa with a friend and her sixteen-month-old son. He was staring at some women a few feet away from us, and they waved at him, oo-ing as strangers do over cute kids, and asking how old he was. His mom told him to wave at them but he just stared and stared. So she told him to blow them a kiss, and instantly, his hand went to his lips to blow kisses.

She said, “He only waves at people he knows, but he’ll blow kisses to anyone.”

I love this.

It got me thinking about the barriers we put up between ourselves and others, and how arbitrary many of those barriers and social rules are. If we think about it at all, we say we’re being sensible, doing it for our own protection (telling older kids, “don’t talk to strangers”) in a dangerous world, but  I’m not so sure about that.

Maybe we could all stand to blow a few more kisses.

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