It is said that confession is good for the soul. In my case, it’s more that confession is good for the soles. I admit, I am a shoe lover.
Some may have a wine collection in their houses. If you had visited me, you’d have found a shoe ‘cellar’. It wasn’t stocked with Manolo Blahnik shoes and exotic leather but, instead, I was overloaded with racks of my ‘mtumba’ and new shoes.
Truth is I’m not an obsessive collector of all things and don’t need. Nonetheless, with shoes, I had the mentality of the pack- rat that is- and couldn’t part with any shoe in which we’d comfortably traveled together at least one enjoyable kilometer walk. By that point, the shoe and I had created a personal bond. We were attached at much more than just the foot. The end of some relationships often warranted a tearful ceremony before giving them away to my cousins. But then something changed.
I happened upon a stream of numerous articles on more beneficial usages for old shoes than stockpiling them or giving them to people who have shoes already. I knew that each time I moved on to the latest shoes, like some pathetic footwear philanderer, that there might be some more kilometers left in my prior pair.
But then my compulsion came up against my compassion. Many of these articles came with pictures and videos of young people without shoes. I realized there comes a time when even the strongest of obsessions must come to an end. I will give my old shoes to children’s homes and they might find some feet.
I know that they’d be going on to a better life. They’d breathe the fresh air again, feel the trails under their soles, and bask in the warmth of a loving touch on their heel counter. It is time for me to cut the proverbial shoelace.