Do you find it strange when strangers say hello?
I went for a quick stroll this morning after dropping my son off to pre-school. We were in a bit of a rush so it was good to relax for a few minutes before I got into my blogging. After doing a quick video on Instagram stories and trying to avoid anyone seeing me walking along talking into my phone (I did come across another mother with a buggy and had to make a quick about turn) I put my phone away and tried to put a bit more power into my walk.
In the distance I spotted a woman with a huge dog; maybe a husky. I tried not to get nervous and put my hands in my pockets to ensure that he wouldn’t decide to have a nibble… What took me by surprise (thankfully it had nothing to do with the dog) was that the woman said hello. I of course answered her back and it got me thinking – under what circumstances is it normal to say hello to a complete stranger.
I don’t know if anyone else has noticed but I find it happens a lot more regularly if you’re in a park, in the countryside or even in my case, just out for some fresh air. You wouldn’t say hello to strangers as you walk past them in a shopping centre and it’s probably only the cashiers that you would communicate with.
When we used to go to music classes at the play centre when E was small, they would sing the ‘hello’ song at the beginning of the session and the ‘goodbye’ song at the end. Ironically, it is at play centres that a lot of mums find it awkward to strike up conversation with other parents. If you’ve arranged to meet someone there that you know then you’re sorted, but if you have to approach an established group of mum friends then it can feel as nerve wracking as walking into a lion’s den.
When I drop E off at pre-school in the mornings I always remind him to say hello to the other children before he runs off and grabs a toy, however the teacher said to me yesterday not to worry as they would do their hello’s in a little while. As it’s ‘getting to know each other’ week, I think they’re focusing on learning each other’s names. I’m not quite sure how they go about it but I would guess there’s probably a circle and hand holding involved.
We could probably learn a lot as adults about the open way kids communicate with each other, I probably won’t take it as far as asking strangers to hold my hand and sing with me though.