When Mirjam Eichenberger went to Milton Keynes to spread some love, she thought she would get a warm welcome – but she soon found out that the concrete city isn’t ready for human affection.
Inspired by the Free Hugs Campaign, Mirjam set about offering free hugs in the centre:mk, bringing a smile to faces of scores of shoppers in the usually emotionless chain store wilderness.
But she soon found out that the Powers that Be didn’t share her enthusiasm for her hugging ways.
Less than an hour into her love-in, she was politely asked by security to leave – and despite fighting her cause with the centre’s management, she was banned from carrying on putting her arms around the bemused public.
Mirjam told Beatcheck: “It was frustrating to having been kicked out less than an hour after having started. I really could feel the place lighting up.
“When the security guard showed up I was almost on a ‘love high’ and didn’t get at first that this actually meant that he’d kick us out. Although being really polite and friendly he was proving that the rules are clearly not meant for human beings but cattle.”
The killjoys at the centre:mk declined to speak to Beatcheck about the affair, but our message to them is this: wouldn’t it be nice if, just for once, Milton Keynes could stop being so set on shopping and open its heart to a bit of love? Wouldn’t it make all our lives just a bit better if people could have a bit of harmless fun from time to time?
Mirjam doesn’t intend on repeating her hug fest any time soon, but is planning on taking part in ‘meditation flash mobs’ – so long as the party poopers at the centre:mk don’t get to her first.