my opinion anksimageSmile and the world smiles with you.. Such a lovely thought! And that’s exactly it is.. just a thought. No one seems to act on it nowadays. Tell me, why can’t you smile back?

When I started living in New York, walking on the streets felt like I had a hangar in my mouth. I had to smile because people I met on the street, neighbor, stranger, or neither, were smiling at me, cheerfully greeting or randomly commenting on the weather or even my hair. It took some time getting used to such a culture but it was nice that someone would definitely ask me how my day was going, or simply wish me a good day, whether the person knew me or not.

I know that’s not something I can expect in India. I would go crazy if some random person was that friendly on the street with me. There would be something very wrong with that picture. We are a cautious culture. We don’t smile at random people. We don’t call out greetings out of the blue. And we don’t definitely smile while passing each other on the street, more if the other person is of the opposite sex.

And here comes my great BUT!! But what if you are a mother of one strolling in the garden with other mother of ones or twos or more? Why can’t you smile back at me then? I mean to say, if we are in a similar setting – me having a nice stroll with my toddler and you with yours, or me having a quick lunch at the restaurant while you are having yours – and I smile at you knowing you are more or less in the same situation as I am, then why can’t you smile back at me?

I’m a female. You’re a female. I’m not going to hit on you. I’m not going to solicit you for anything. It’s just a way to be nice. So why can’t you be nice? What is wrong with people these days? I’m not asking you to smile or smile back at some sleazy character. Be the judge. Decide who you can be nice to. Being cautious is one thing but you don’t have to treat everyone with doubt – guilty until proven innocent!

Think about it. Take a moment. What do you got to lose? Just smile back if someone smiles at you. Don’t look away, or see through the person. Just smile. Remember, smile uses less muscles on your face and helps in keeping away those wrinkles.

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