Monday, December 20, 2010

Bisou, Bisou...

I am a very kissy, huggy person. This is just another thing I absolutely love about the culture in France. No mere handshakes there...they say hello with a kiss and sometimes two.

Sadly, we Americans find this too much of an invasion of personal space. In fact, we have even come up with an annoying little phrase for the kiss: Public Displays of Affection, or PDA's for short. Good grief, really people? We are just too uptight...

What else is more intimate than a kiss? (Okay, I know the answer for that, but work with me here.) A kiss is a wonderful way to share a part of yourself with someone you meet. I am not referring to the sloppy, wet, yuck-I-think-I'm-drowning-in-slobber kind of kiss. I am referring to the slight hug and kiss on the cheek. It says I am happy to see you, I am happy you are you, I am happy to spend time with you.

Don't get me wrong...I also love the long, lingering intimate kiss that takes my breath away and lets me know I have been missed. You know, the kind that leaves your knees weak and makes your heart race. Those are some of the best kinds of kisses.

But somewhere along the way we got so wrapped up in not wanting to be offended by PDA's we forgot the most wonderful thing about them...seeing and being and experiencing someone who means so much to us, along with our desire to let them know so.


  1. Yeah, I kind of like it sometimes but I hate it during cold and flu season. And it can be really confusing sometimes. Like there are some people you kiss hello, and some you don't. And sometimes you give two kisses, and sometimes three. And I haven't figured it all out yet. I think French people are born knowing all this. So most of the time, I feel pretty stupid.

  2. I totally get what you are saying. I wish we were a more warm culture. I have some Mexican/Spanish friends who are warm in their greetings with one another too--lots of hugging. We were at a gathering not long ago and it was the usual "hey!", maybe a handshake with everyone. Then our Spanish friends came...they went around to every single person and gave a hug/kiss greeting. It was so lovely.


Please share your thoughts, ideas, hopes, and dreams...I love reading every one of them!