Without fail everywhere we go together, Kingsley, you attract strangers who want to take you in their arms, kiss your cheeks, coo and sing silly songs into your ear. Erroll is dead against such overt signs of, how he sees it, invasion of personal space bordering on disrespect. How can a stranger consider it legitimate to approach us, with outstretched arms and demand to hug you? He is always taken aback by their behavior and fumes (to me) once the offending stranger deposits you back into our care, face full of someone else’s kissy germs, and leaves the scene all smiles that they have somehow achieved something.
I am much less rigid about such things. My stance is that if a well meaning stranger wishes to bless you through physical embraces, well who am I to deny such good tidings? They all invoke God in their dealings with you (Mash ‘Allah, Alhamdulillah, etc.) that it would be a crying shame not to pass you over to them.
Erroll thinks of the worst: what happens if they drop Kingsley in their enthusiastic (and improper) dealings? Should I too be worrying about stranger’s bugs and germs? Passing something unwanted onto Kingsley? I know it is my duty as a parent to make sure our son is safe including from strangers hands.