Last night I joined with a group of friends to open arms and hearts and embrace life full on. Periodically, I throw a party that takes the love that knows no language barrier, to the streets of the nearby town of Doylestown, PA. What happens is nothing short of a miracle each time.
The folks who came to play are enthusiastic joy bringers who interact with the world in passionate ways. I have known one of them for more than 20 years and the most recent who are mother and daughter, a few weeks. Each carried with them their own brand of magic.
Although any day is fine for hugging, as far as I am concerned, the purpose yesterday was to celebrate International Day of Peace. The world can feel like a dark and frightening place. People see separation and isolation. Hugs have a way of bringing folks together like nothing else I know. Human connection is priceless. Whenever I do these events, I feel like a sociologist/anthropologist. I observe people’s reactions to an offer of a hug. Some enthusiastically jump into our outstretched arms, while others look down, walk briskly past us; some wave us off and say “Nah, I’m good.” To them, we respond, “Hug somebody today. Hug yourself.”
When you watch the video, you will see the various emotions that hugging evokes. I was moved by the young people who hugged us. Early on in the evening, we were ‘swarmed’ by a group of teen soccer players dressed in jerseys that were yellow and black striped so they resembled bees. My cousin Jody brought her dog Maddy who eagerly flopped over for belly rubs. We met a young couple on their first date, hung out with musicians from The School of Rock, stopped by local restaurants, bars and other businesses, posed with a giraffe sculpture, squeezed into a meter booth; kind of like a phone booth, met a man who participates in the annual New Years Day tradition in Philly called The Mummers’ Parade. Together we did the Mummers’ strut.
By the end of the night, I estimate that we hugged at least 1oo willing people. Looks fun, huh? I invite you to become a Hugmobster, armed with love. Imagine a world where love rules. Pretty awesome.
Photos and video courtesy of Jason Wood. <3