Free Hugs

I found myself in Seoul earlier this week for work.  My trip had been scheduled for the beginning of December, but was postponed for a number of reasons.  Postponed to the middle of a completely crazy hectic time of the year at work and in my personal life, with the run up to Christmas and time feeling so short…

I travel a lot on business and do my best to make sure that I enjoy myself when I’m on the road.  It’s not easy – I get jetlagged and feel drained.  But to manage this I make sure that I get to the gym, I try to eat well and I do my best not drink too much alcohol (sometimes a challenge when you do business in Asia!).  We also try to get out and see some of the cities we find ourselves in.  On Monday we took advantage of some free time and wandered through the shopping district in Seoul and went to see the performance Nanta (think kitchen percussion – banging pots and pans, chopping knives and a lot of humour – it was awesome).

We killed time before the performance wandering around, getting some fresh air (-10*C—so cold!) and as we did we walked past two guys, each holding a sign.  “Free Hug”

Hm. Seriously?  A free hug?

I was never much of a hugger until I met DH.  He has completely converted me to the simple joy of the hug—the way that a good hug can lift spirits, erase stress, and just turn around a day.

I couldn’t help myself.  I had to have one.

Turns out that this is all a part of the Free Hug movement.  The idea is simple – in a world of social disconnectivity (so much of what we do is online and impersonal) nothing beats real world contact and the epitomy of real world contact is a hug.  You don’t need to save hugs for people you know – if you share one with a stranger it can have an equal if not more powerful effect.

I am sold.  I want to get a sign, and give out some hugs.

Who’s with me?

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