Hug – what an unlovely sounding word for a lovely action. Derived from the Norwegian word ‘hugga’ – which sounds better. Amazing what that second syllable will do!

I think a hug is one of the most beautiful gestures we can offer. Hugs aren’t confined to humans either; many animals hug each other and us if we give them the chance. Unlike language which is open to mis-interpretation, hugs are universal – no chance of using the wrong word, saying the wrong thing, putting your size nines in the wrong place. Perhaps we could even offer a hug to the aliens when they arrive from their far-flung planet? Actually, wouldn’t it be interesting if they too had hugs?

Hugs express joy, compassion, comfort; warmth, love, pleasure; welcome home; safe passage; sympathy. When there are no words suitable a hug will fill the gap with a universal message.

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