BEING a writer has its drawbacks I discovered one day when I took my shoes over to the shoe shop. “New shoes!” said the shoe shop owner looking at the pair.
“Quite old,” I said, “nearly three years!” “They’re still as good as new!” “But the soles have gone!” I complained, “they started falling apart!”
“That’s what happens when you don’t use them,” he said, “polyurethane soles are the best but have to be used constantly! Otherwise they disintegrate!” “You mean,” I asked incredulously, “the soles got worn out because they were not used?”
“Yep,” he said and made out a hefty bill for new soles, “you can pick them up on Saturday but same thing will happen if you don’t use them.”
I wandered out of the shop and looked around, there were hundreds of people walking, running, rushing, all wearing different kinds of foot wear. I looked carefully at shoes and footwear that suddenly seemed to catch my eye.
None of them looked new. I’m sure they were clean when they left their houses in the morning, but now looked used, dusty, unpolished and dirty.
I looked closely at their soles; some were worn out to the right, some to the left, some ragged in the front, shabby and tattered at the back; there was one pair with frayed shoe laces, another with a bit of toe showing, and still another on its last legs with pieces of rubber hanging on for dear life! But wonder of wonders, as I looked closer, I noticed that though most of them looked careworn and knackered, bushed and run down, there was not a pair that looked unhappy!
Now I know you’re going to turn to me and say, “Come now man, there’s no thing like happy shoes!” But there are.
All those pairs looked pleased, mighty pleased with themselves as they walked and ran and pushed and kicked and strutted around.
I looked back through the glass windows into the shop. My shoes were still on the counter. I guess the salesman was still waiting for the chap from the repair department to come and take them away.
They looked fine to me, if you didn’t look farther down at the non- existent soles. But there was no joy. They looked tired, unhappy and dejected.
“We were meant to be used!” they screamed at me silently through the glass. I walked a little faster to my car before they hurled themselves at me, and as I sat inside, wondered what else in my life were like my pair of shoes, disintegrating because I wasn’t using them.
What God given talents, skills, abilities and gifts were lying wrapped up, all nice and shiny in the showcases of my mind and heart all waiting to fall apart?