November 2, 2015

I spent the day sniffling and snorting and trying to get my congested brain to function so I could write, but words and sentences and thoughts came slowly today. The hours passed quickly though, and before I’d written half of what I’d hoped to write today, it was 3pm and time to pick up my son Theo from school. I thought about taking a pair of shoes I wanted to give away along with me to school just in case I saw Lena, one of only two friends that shares my shoes size (see February 3, August 4 and September 23!), but I rarely see her at pick up, so I left the shoes at home. But I walked in the gate, who should I see but Lena, with her son Malcolm! Darn it, I thought to myself. I should have brought the shoes.

Several hours later, after helping Theo with homework, making dinner and then rushing out to CVS to buy some tissues for my runny nose, I realized I really wanted to give Lena the shoes today. It was 7:30pm and it had rained so it was cool and damp outside, but although I was feeling rough, I was determined to try, so I texted her to see if I could come by with the shoes. Her response was “Haha! This is for your blog?” I confessed it was, and she told me to come by since she didn’t want me to fail in my Giveaway so close to the end of the project. Nice friend. When I arrived at her place, Malcolm was in his PJs doing a bit of homework. I showed Lena the brown slingback shoes I had hoped to give her. She tried them on. They fit but she didn’t seem very keen on them. (These were the same shoes I’d given to Ami on July 3. They hadn’t worked for her so I’d exchanged them for an art book for her daughter.) “Dang it! Those are pointy shoes!” exclaimed Malcolm from across the room. Apparently this was his favorite new phrase. I felt bad that I was distracting him from his homework.

Luckily I had another pair of shoes, the strappy red satin sandals that I’d worn 12 years ago for our wedding. Though they were high-heeled, they were very comfortable. In fact, I had managed to dance for hours in them at the wedding, so they served me very well. But, I think my feet have probably grown half a size since then and I can’t wear them anymore. I pulled them out of my bag and showed them to Lena. “I’d wear those,” she said and then tried to wrangle her right foot into one. Somehow the straps weren’t cooperating at first and we both laughed at the Cinderella moment we were having. “Dang it!” exclaimed Malcolm, who was now standing next to us, intrigued by all this shoe talk. After a couple more tries, Lena’s foot was elegantly sitting in the sandal, and she had won the hand of her prince – well, a free pair of strappy red sandals anyway. This was all too exciting for Malcolm. He padded over to the other sandal and slipped his left foot into the left sandal and started hobbling around the room declaring, “Dang it! These are comfortable!”

Much laughter ensued. Despite the strangeness of my desperate, cold-ridden offer of shoes on a rainy Monday evening, the Giveaway had turned into a memorable moment, sweet and silly, with touches of fairy tale and even a bit of Harry Potter too, though it was I who felt liberated, like the house elf Dobby, when Lena accepted my shoes! I drove home smiling to myself, thankful that My Daily Giveaway, which just half an hour before had felt like a burden, had transformed into another precious gift – for me.

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