What happened to “Hello?”

Today I went to Costco to pick up a few things. My kids love the burgers there so while I was lugging them out of the frozen food section I heard a woman behind me speaking: “Do you use these often?” Oh, I thought, she’s  probably a mom asking about the quality of the burgers.  I turned around, smiled and started to answer her question bringing a bit of my extra sales technique as I do love these burgers. But then, as I was speaking, her face seemed so familiar to me. Wait a second…I know you! I was still talking about the burgers though; funny how our minds process things in miliseconds, because I certainly felt the brakes go off here! “Claudia, you don’t remember me??” I haven’t seen Claudia in two years however we used to chat every day outside of a school I used to work at. We knew eachother when we were pregnant  and would stand in the parking lot for almost 20 minutes sometimes until the last car left. Claudia stopped and looked at me like I was a bit strange: “Yes of course I remember you, why do you think I am asking you a question?” she smiled with that matter of fact. Oh, well…’how are you Claudia? Nice to see you, how are the kids?” I started to ask.

As I walked away after answering her question about the burgers and having a brief talk about her upcoming birthday party, I  thought: ‘are we all really all that busy?” What has happened to society in this Go! Go! Go! world? Do I do that? Am I that fast that I can’t even stop to say ‘hello, my old friend, how are you?” Has it come to this, that we know each other, share smiles,have nice conversations but the mad rush is more important than asking about each other? Has our human nature of saying ‘hello” been forgotten? Is my human touch fading away in this?

The simple greeting – just saying hello – I agree,is the glue that holds society together.  It has always stood for co-operation and peace, as it creates a bond: before you say hello, you are strangers. In some countries hello translates to ‘peace be upon you’ and is a blessing to the person you greet.  Afterwards, you are friends, family, colleagues and more.

So what are your thoughts on this? Do we pass this natural lesson of saying hello to others to our children in the midst of our rush to get it all done? As our world keeps getting faster and faster, as humans we have to adapt, and the survivors are known as those who can “keep up!’ Faster, faster, keep up, stop for a rest???next, next, next! Once in a while perhaps we need to stop, reflect and remember that  we are human first.

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