Thursday, November 15, 2007


My mom lent me her green plastic gardening clogs. They came with dirt. My dad brought them by on Saturday along with his boots. For awhile I wondered why she chose these shoes in particular. I know that she happens to have many pairs of shoes, and this pair usually sits on my parent's back porch for whenever my mom happens to be working in the yard. Maybe she thought they'd be the easiest pair for me to use. Or maybe she didn't want to part with any of the shoes she really loves or uses frequently. I finally did ask her, and she said that she thought about what shoes would best represent her and what she enjoys, and she loves spending time in the garden. Also, she wanted to lend me something that would be easy for me to take on and off. It's funny, I knew she liked her garden, but didn't realize it was something she cared so deeply about--I guess in all the busy-ness that is life she hasn't been able to spend much time working in the garden in recent years.

It happened to be grey and wet a good part of the day, so the clogs were kind of appropriate. I rode my bike to some appointments I had, worked from home a bit, dropped in on Janet and Caleb, and then went to teach the Wednesday art class (when I came in a girl looked at me, furrowed her brow, and told me that my hair looked weird. I had to agree).

The clogs were hard and not very comfortable. They also wanted to fall off my feet. I think they were size 9 or so. It made it hard to walk on the sidewalk, which is where I was walking most of the time. just the feeling of hard plastic on concrete wasn't so enjoyable. I imagine that they would be more useful in the garden.

(I should mention that these socks are thanks to Mama Jean--she crochets charms, beads and buttons onto socks, at first just for my little cousins, but when I remarked how much I liked them, she started sending them to my sister and I. Katie (my sister) usually gives hers to me, which I have no problem with. Recently Mama Jean started selling them to raise money for a scholarship fund in my aunt's memory.)

It was interesting--although I sometimes had to concentrate to not lose a shoe or two, I found myself feeling less self conscious than the first couple of days. I am wondering if this happens to have something to do with the particular pair of shoes (they did match my green raincoat rather well) or with the fact that this was the 4th day, and I'm becoming accustomed to the not-quite-myself feeling of wearing someone else's footwear. I'm not sure.
I also found myself wondering about the nonreciprocal nature of this project. I wonder if my mom would be willing to put herself in my shoes. I'll have to ask.

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