A man just knocked on my door, when I opened it he had tears in his eyes. He said “I made some little food, some rice or whatever.” He stopped, took a deep breath. “I’m sorry, I was just talking to my aunt and she died while we were talking on the phone, my sister was sitting next to her.”

My heart just sank. This man, with tears now streaming down his face came to my door, barely knowing me, with food in his hand.

I put my arms around him and hugged him tight and told him I was sorry for his pain and loss. He hugged me back.

“I’ve lost so many in here. My son, my wife, my Mom, my other sister, now my aunt…I made some other stuff…you can have it, I don’t want it, it’s just…I’ve already made it before I heard. Sorry to come to your door like this.”

That hug, people across the world, that hug was an illegal act. Were not supposed to do that. I’m not supposed to touch anyone, let alone hug them. But in that moment I know what it feels like to just need to feel the contact, physical contact, of another human being who genuinely cares.

I hugged him because it was the right thing to do.

Guess that’s the criminal in me.

With Love
Ruth Utnage