Over the hedge

The stolen hug

When I was teaching in a preschool, I was consistently amazed at the balance of logic and spontaneity unfiltered by opinion that came from the mouths of the 3- and 4-year-olds.

One of the children, Bion, was always full of surprises. One day, when I was walking to meet the kids, I spotted him from a distance, crying and reaching out his arms to his mother, who was going to work. She gave him one last hug.

His crying quieted as she walked away, but he was still a little glum when we returned to class. "Bion," I said, "what's wrong?"

Without hesitating, he answered, "I didn't give my mom a hug."

"Yes, you did," I said. "I saw you."

As though I should know better, Bion said, "No, I didn't. She took it from me."

Elizabeth Mata

Elsah, Ill.

• Contribute to this column by telling us about a humorous, touching, or surprising incident that you observed or participated in. E-mail living@csps.com. Please include your name and location.

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