Affection is something that has always brought me happiness and comfort. From a very young age, I thrived when I was cuddled, kissed, and loved. I haven’t lost it, but I’ve grown aware of the fact that our culture doesn’t embrace affection the way we should.

When you see a fight in the street, or read about it in the paper, so often our reaction is one of shock and horror. It doesn’t strike the chord of being something disgusting or repulsive, though. At least not in the same way when you see couples kiss in public. The very idea of “PDA” carries a widely negative connotation.

No, I’m not talking about dry humping, wet kissing, making out, and things that make you feel as though you entered someone’s bedroom instead of a Starbucks. That does not have a place in public forum, however, the cute flirting and giggling with the occasional kiss is something that is adorable to me.

This morning was a little stressful– after returning from Thanksgiving with The Man’s family in Buffalo and the late traveling, the little sleep we got was interrupted by roommates grinding a grocer’s supply of vegetables at 4am. I got on the Manhattan-bound N train on my way home, and I saw this couple. Both still looked sleepy, but happy to be with each other. With Kindles in hand, they joked around with each other, then cheerfully kissed each other with such affection it was heartwarming. They smiled three inches from each others face as I turned away.

I recalled a time when I was single and unable to find it in myself to be happy for those who had that partner with whom to share those sweetly private moments in a public place. Today, I am thankful that I could see two strangers and find them beautiful. They made my morning a little more sweet.