An Idiom of Deep Respect

I kiss your eyes!

Local Oral Tradition

Our local language ties much of its respectful language to the eyes, and to kissing. I’ve never seen anyone actually kiss anyone else’s eyes, but I have heard this phrase uttered thousands of times, and often with genuine respect. Personally, I’m still getting used to other men just kissing my cheeks. You never can tell if it will be an every other side three or four kiss exchange or a four or five time same cheek kiss barrage. Or sometimes they go for the rare shoulder kiss. All must be interspersed with respectful phrases, “My brother! (kiss) My flower! (kiss, gasp), You respectable one! (kiss), May you ever live! (gasp, awkward last kiss, unsure if the other person is finished or not).

For kicks, you could try this idiom out with your Western friends sometime.

“Hey bro, I need some moving help on Saturday. Can you come?”

“I kiss your eyes!” (said with a flourish).

“Um, ok, well… does that mean you can come?”

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