Wednesday, June 16, 2010


I've been doing a lot of kissing since I moved to the UK.

As I'm sure you all know, in Europe people greet each other with light kisses on the cheek. I hear they do this in the US in places like Hollywood and New York City. But not in places like my hometown of Okemos, Michigan.

It's been a lot to get used to, especially for a socially inept, clumsy oaf such as myself.

Sometimes I think people are going to kiss me when instead they hug. Sometimes they kiss instead. Brits kiss one cheek, continental Europeans kiss both cheeks (and may repeat!). I blush every single time a male friend kisses me.

All that said, I do find it a nice tradition, much warmer than a handshake or an enthusiastic hello. I just wish there was some sort of kissing manual. Perhaps that can be my next book project.


  1. Try living in the Netherlands where they kiss three times..I was always forgetting and then head-butting people trying to give me a third kiss. Not back in England I have to consciously remember not to go for that third kiss. It's a social minefield.

  2. Hah! Thanks, Keren, you made my day with this comment! So happy to know other people struggle with all of this too! It IS a social minefield!

  3. It is less common in Germany.
    There are certain rules for it in Brazil too, where I lived awhile back. One kiss for some, two for others, different for class, sex, etc. Yep. Seeing boys kiss my teenage girl (lots of boys) and girls kiss my teenage boys there, took getting used to.

    Don't forget--we have to do the correct cheek first, or it becomes a head bump experience. Not that I do that--- very often.

  4. Oh, those Germans! =)

    Goodness, and I thought the UK was complicated! Or maybe it is as complicated as Brazil and I just haven't figured it out yet! =) Though it does make sense to me that the Brazilians would have all sorts of kissing etiquette!

    I didn't even think of all the ramifications of seeing your children kissing others. Goodness!

    I'm so pleased I'm not the only one struggling with kissing! =)

  5. That kissing manual you're looking for? Almost any YA you can name!

  6. Hah! That is most certainly true, Anne! Not so much social kissing, but definitely the other kind! =)


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.