I have just discovered that my leather Punjabi elf shoes have begun to mold. Well, actually, that’s putting it mildly. The insides are completely covered with blue and green spots, ugly bruises of neglect. They are a testament to my careless placement of them on the damp floor for weeks on end. I’m a terrible shoe mother. But the blue and green bruises are not the only evidence of neglect- a carpet of fuzzy white mold has spread across the insides, the outsides, and the stitching, as well.
My Chacko sandals absolutely reek. Because the straps never dry, they have taken on an odor that reminds me of the way my brother’s feet used to smell when he was a child. We’d have to soak his feet in a special anti-bacterial soap and water mix for hours, and only then we could unclench our noses for a bit and breathe freely. My Chackos smell like my memory of his dirty, little boy feet. I am embarrassed to wear them out in public.
My flip flops are made of rubber, so they don’t smell and they aren’t moldly, but they are entirely unsuitable for these slick orange mountain trails. Every day when the monsoon pours down, paths turn into rushing rivers, and the threat of falling on your ass increases ten-fold. Given that this threat is already huge considering that the paths never dry, they just turn into slick mudways, this makes walking anywhere a very risky endeavor. By wearing slippery rubber thongs, you take your life in your hands when traveling down these perilous mountain trails.
So I find myself in a bit of a dilemma. In the words of the Indians who live all around me, Oh, what to do? What to do!?