I bumped into a pal at the weekend. I haven’t seen him in a few years though interact most days online.
As we shook hands in greeting and chatted briefly before moving off on our divergent routes I spent the rest of my hike thinking about how symbolic that handshake would be. Like so many others I have not shook hands with anyone since March due to Covid-19 concerns and personal responsibility towards vulnerable people.
As I rambled on I began thinking, how the handshake has almost become a by-rote symbol of business deals and greeting and in many cases has lost the original meaning or at least has evolved from the original meaning to the point where that is often forgotten:
The handshake is believed by some to have originated as a gesture of peace by demonstrating that the hand holds no weapon
It is a sign of honour and trust.
Post lockdown that humble handshake is going to regain the status of being a sign of honour and trust.
In offering our hands to shake we will be clearly signaling that “you can trust that I have been responsible, have obeyed the guidelines and done all I personally can to ensure the safety and wellbeing of those around me. By accepting your hand I believe and trust in the same of you.”
Lets not take the handshake for granted. There is a lot of meaning in that humble gesture.