Creature of Comfort
Living in a rural area and being retired both serve to limit the need on my part to get "dressed up." And that is particularly true when it comes to footwear. My standard fare is, for most occasions, flip-flops or a ratty old pair of tennis shoes that are used for everything from mowing the yard to doctor visits. My fashion sense has comfort trumping style every time.
I haven't even bought a pair of shoes since my father passed away six years ago and I found several new pairs in his closet (in my size) that had never been worn. They lasted through my final few years of work, and now I still have one pair left. I had worn that pair, a generic set of loafers, on a couple of occasions and found them to be comfortable. Then, last fall when Gail and I went to Chicago to see her granddaughter perform in an opera, I took those same shoes along. But that time, as I was getting ready for our big evening out, I discovered that the shoes, the only pair which I had brought along, no longer fit.
Assuming that my feet had suddenly grown, or swollen, or the shoes had mysteriously shrunk, I forced my feet into them and spent the rest of the evening hobbling around in pain. It was an awful experience. When I got back home I gave the offending footwear to my son and told him to sell them at his flea market booth. I didn't ever want to see those shoes again!
A couple of days later Nick brought me a pair thin dress socks. "You might want these," he said. "I found them crammed in the toes of those shoes you gave me." Ouch!
This morning I received an email from my daughter. Molly, who had no idea about my recent shoe humiliation, found a story that she liked on the Internet and wanted to share it. The story reminded me of my days as an elementary school principal when I would have to rush out to the kindergarten building any time school closed early (due to things like sudden snow storms, etc) and help the teachers get their students bundled into boots, coats, hats, and gloves. And it also reminded me of my recent night at the opera.
Here is the tale that Molly shared:
Here's to making your mistakes early in life!A kindergarten teacher was helping one of her students put his boots on. He had asked for help and she could see why. With her pulling and him pushing, the boots still didn’t want to go on.When the second boot was on, she was nearly out of breath.She almost whimpered when the little boy said, “Teacher, they’re on the wrong feet.”She looked and sure enough, they were. It wasn’t any easier pulling the boots off than it was putting them on. She managed to keep her cool as they worked together to get the boots back on – this time on the right feet.He then announced, “These aren’t my boots.”She bit her tongue rather than scream, “Why didn’t you say so earlier?” like she wanted to. Once again she struggled to help him pull the ill-fitting boots off.He then said, “They’re my brother’s boots. My Mom made me wear them.”She didn’t know if she should laugh or cry. She mustered up the grace to wrestle the boots on his feet again. She said, Now, where are your gloves?”He said, “I stuffed them in the toes of my boots…”