I am a hugger. I almost always ask someone if they want a hug, and I honor their request. Usually, people say yes. I have one good friend and I know she's not a hugger, so when I see her I usually touch her shoulder and say, "Consider yourself hugged."
Last Tuesday I went to our regional mall. I had a couple of pieces of jewelry I wanted to have appraised: a rope of pearls my dad brought back from Japan in the 60s, a watch without a band that belonged to my grandmother, and a brooch with a gold locket that was also my grandmother's. I'd been referred to a jewelry store called Alana's, so that was my destination.
As it turned out, Alana's was going out of business. It was a small shop, and there were about 20 people crowded in there, plus a fellow with a large camera who might have been part of the media. I knew an appraisal was not going to be happening there. However, I needed a couple of items of makeup, which I usually buy in a little Nordstrom storefront in the mall. So I walked up there. I was assisted by a young woman, made up vividly but tastefully. As she helped me find the right blush for my older face, and eyebrow color to tame my wild gray brows, I told her about my upcoming trip to London with my granddaughter Kai (she's recently changed her name from Cory, for those of you who keep track of my grandchildren). Kai had requested that we go to London Pride, which has a parade the day our tour finishes up, and I had said yes.
The young woman said, "Oh, she's lucky to have you for a grandmother. I'm transgender, and my grandmother was the first person to call me Rosemary. Even when she had Alzheimers and was close to death, she remembered." She teared up talking about her recently deceased grandmother. I gave her a hug and she hugged me back. Then I gave her another hug and I said, "This one is from your grandmother." Then I left.
Then, last weekend, my husband Art and I flew to Spokane to spend a few days with our grandkids. The twins haven't seen me in a year, and since one of them will be traveling with me nine days from now, I thought we ought to re-familiarize ourselves with each other.
I said to Kai, "Do you have anything I can wear to show my support for Pride?" I was thinking a bracelet or hat or something. She went to Amazon right then and ordered me this shirt:
I hope I give a lot of hugs at Pride.
PS: I sold all three pieces of my jewelry at a store called "Not Just Antiques" for $12.