Erica Lucke Dean

"Making the world a better place, one book at a time."

if the shoe fits

I was on a mission today.  To find summer shoes—specifically casual sandals, but I would have been delighted to find a pair that would be suitable for work as well.  I recruited my husband and our youngest child for the insane expedition.  After all, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different result.  And I was determined to find the perfect pair of sandals for my hard to shop for feet.  It was that resolve that fueled my quest.   

The first stop was Kohl’s.  They don’t have a wide selection, so leaving there empty handed wasn’t much of a blow to my confidence.  In fact, the few cute sandals I found there inspired me to widen my search. 

My husband, despite his gender driven desire to steer as clear from shoe stores as humanly possible, steered the car toward the next department store that carried ladies shoes.  And there was even a sale!

Flesh eating zombies might be easier to fight off than a crowd of women at a shoe sale.  There was a line in place just to try on a shoe in the right size.  I requested no less than seven different pairs of shoes in my size.  They only had one.  But did I give up?  No!  I was motivated by the $3 pair of flip flops on my feet that were all but falling apart.  With each step, as they slapped against my bare feet, I was propelled forward through the crowd searching for the elusive shoes that came in my size.  I was confident that they were out there.  And I would be the first person to find them.  I mentally dared anyone to try to wrestle them away from me.  That is if I could find any. 

There were shoes everywhere.  Boxes stacked up on the chairs, boxes stacked up on tables, boxes in the aisles.  If only these boxes held my sandals.  The sandals that would make my feet say “ah” the minute I slipped my toes in. 

I was digging through these boxes of sale shoes when I was run over by an old lady in a wheel chair.  In her defense, the old woman wasn’t driving.  It was her daughter pushing her that caused her to slam into my ankles at a dizzying velocity.  It was like being run over by a grocery cart filled with frozen turkeys. But I’ve been run over by grocery carts more times than I could possibly count, and never died from my wounds.  That’s what I told her when she asked me if I was ok.  I was certain I would live.  She was very sweet about it.  In fact, she stalked me around the department for the rest of my visit making sure I wasn’t bleeding out of my Achilles tendon or something. 

Admittedly it hurt pretty badly, but I wasn’t going to make an old lady feel guilty all day.  She reminded me of my grandmother.  Of course, my grandmother was known to chase the grandchildren around in her wheel chair from time to time.  I don’t know if she ever caught anyone, but it didn’t stop her from trying.

I left the department store empty handed and slightly dejected, but hardly ready to give up.  There was a Famous Footwear just across the street, and there was still plenty of daylight left. 

I have blisters on my feet from all the shoes I tried on.  I felt like Cinderella’s ugly stepsister, attempting to squeeze my enormous feet into the pretty little sandals in one size smaller than I needed.  I no longer cared about the perfect shoes, or even pretty shoes.  I was simply looking for my size shoes.  Ok, that’s a lie.  I did find several pair in my size that reminded me of the old woman in the wheel chair, and I am definitely not old enough for those kinds of shoes!

We didn’t leave the store empty handed this time.  We bought our daughter a pair of sandals.  They were on sale.  She was delighted.  I was decidedly not delighted.  And after more than three hours of his life that he will never get back, my husband has declared that I will be shoe shopping on the internet from now on. 

It would seem that, much like the alcoholic who has to admit he has a problem, I must make a sobering admission as well.  I have big feet.  Size eleven.  That’s almost unheard of in women’s shoes.  But because I’m very tall, it seems perfectly proportional to me.  I do trip a lot, and it’s entirely possible this is in some small part due to my Sasquatch-sized feet.  But unlike the size of my jeans that can dramatically fluctuate depending on my Girl Scout cookie consumption, my feet do not change sizes by more than a fractional amount when I diet.  So, as my husband has stressed to me more times this evening than I care to relay, I need to just accept my shoe size and deal with it. 

I may need a little time to get used to that.

Until the next time…Google shoe search here I come!

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