I already told you about people refusing free hugs, sometimes with very funny excuses. But it would not be fair to forget the big majority of people who accepted my free hugs.
Running to me with open arms
A big smile, people opening arms, people even running to me: I had really nice reactions when showing my free hug sign.
I was deeply moved the first time someone told me "You made my day". How can a simple hug change your day on the Camino? Really?
But the truth is that, from time to time, people really appreciate a hug. They told me nice words such as"
- Such a great idea
- Oh yes, I need this so much
- I was dreaming about a hug since yesterday
- You should never refuse a free hug
- Thank you for the love you gave me while holding me into your arms
I also gave my email to some people who sent me wonderful messages.
Ok, if you want a hug, I give you one
One day, a French lady told me: "OK, I'll give you a hug if that is what you want". My first reaction was to tell her that I gave HER a hug, and that she was not obliged to accept it.
After a while, I deeply regretted my arrogant reaction. Who am I to refuse her a hug? Is it lore important for me to give or to receive something in return?
May be it was hard for this lady to receive a gift, and it is her best way to say "Yes".
I was really sorry because I was sure that this lady really needed a hug. And I stupidly missed a nice opportunity to give her the love she desperately was looking for.
Since that day, I always gave hugs when people answered me " Ok, if you want" and I never forgot to thank them for their nice hug.
Giving without expecting anything in return
Although thankful words and messages are wonderful, I should never forget San Francisco's words:
"Oh Master grant that I may never seek so much to be consoled as to console, to be understood as to understand, to be loved as to live with all my soul."