879: Walking barefoot for miles

In support of TOMS shoes, help spread the word about this awful moment in lives of children:

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One Day Without Shoes is the day we spread awareness about the impact a simple pair of shoes can have on a child’s life. On April 8th, we ask people to go the day, part of the day or even just a few minutes, barefoot, to experience a life without shoes first-hand, and inspire others at the same time.

Pledge your support! RSVP and be entered to win a spot on a TOMS Shoe Drop, all expenses paid.

It’s Hard Without Shoes

Through everyday encounters with domestic poverty, we are reminded to appreciate having food and shelter, but most of us all but forget about our feet. Food, shelter, AND shoes facilitate life’s fundamentals. Imagine a life without shoes; constantly aware of the ground in front of you, suffering regular cuts and scrapes, tending to infection after each walk, and enduring not only terrain, but heat and cold.

The problem is large, but the solution is simple. Wearing shoes and practicing basic hygiene can prevent both infection and disease due to unsafe roads and contaminated soil. By imagining a life barefoot, we can all contribute to the awareness of these conditions. On April 8th, communities, campuses, organizations, and individuals are banding together to walk barefoot for One Day Without Shoes.

Take a walk with us on April 8th, 2010.

Facts:

  • In some developing nations, children must walk for miles to school, clean water and to seek medical help.
  • Cuts and sores on feet can lead to serious infection.
  • Often, children cannot attend school barefoot.
  • In Ethiopia, approximately one million people are suffering from Podoconiosis, a debilitating and disfiguring disease caused by walking barefoot in volcanic soil.
  • Podoconiosis is 100% preventable with basic foot hygiene and wearing shoes.

Learn more about our mission and giving at www.TOMS.com.

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946. Taking an extra surprise step in the snow

You can’t believe it!  It actually is snowing!  So you layer on 3 shirts, 2 pants, 2 thick socks, gloves, a scarf, glasses, a hoodie, boots, and a thick winter jacket!  Good to go!  So you get outside to enjoy the snow as in some areas like ours it’s just a rarity!  So you figure why not walk to 7-11 it’s open cause you know they are open all the time kinda like Walmart, it just never seems to close!

So as you take steps towards the sidewalk things to be doing well!  I got this down you think.  So you just hobble along the snow as best as you can – hey what can I say it’s better than shoveling it!  Anyhow, as you make your journey 2 short blocks to get some coffee you get to the cross walk.  You cross the street carefully not to make sure you slide off on some black ice so you then search for the curb and sidewalk.  Since the roads are rather covered in thick snow you make due with where you think the sidewalk might be located.  You continue to look a bit as the snow just flurries by your face not making any of this better.

Searching …

Searching….

THERE! Found a spot, you jump on it a little bit, good continue the walk and then you take a step good …feels about safe and then you look over and notice the street lamp post is a bit close to your left isn’t the sidewalk to the left of it and as you turn your foot DROPS deep down a pocket of snow and sinks causing you to lose your footing and balance and topple in the snow.  Great!!!!  How nice!

Oh nice here comes a car, now how awful is that?!

951. Walking down the sidewalk to the beat of a song, but off key

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So taking your leisurely walk down the block to jolt up your day.  You just finish uploading a fresh mix of songs to inspire your day and get the energy flowing. Nothing could go wrong for you this fine morning.

As you check the weather online

Pick out the cool workout attire

You set your shoes on and

Out the door for a good round or so.

Now as you cue up your music you start feeling the energy come alive and then you skip a song or two and it’s that song you wanted that gets you in the energy crazed mood.  You want to dance in the streets – but you can’t.  You want to sing out loud – but you have no voice.  So what do you do?

You walk to the beat of the music.  That’s right it’s all you!  You’re workin’ it.  Get it Get it!  You’re on fire!  That’s okay if the cars down the street see you doin’ your thing.  Cause it’s your song.  Own the moment.

Then you trip up badly on the sidewalk not noticing the uneven pavement.  Go to fullsize image

It’s okay…no one saw you until you hear

HONK!!!!! HONK!!!!!!

Saw that!

Now how awful is that?!

957. When your child is off running around while you are doing a task

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It always seem that toddlers and little children happen to know when the best time to strike and create their own little world of excitement.  As a parent one thing to know is that you do not want to go somewhere and be publicly humiliated or embarrassed on behalf of their actions (funny how tables turn when they become tweens).

Well as I was waiting for a set of keys to be delivered tome today  sat in the lobby just looking over some forms reviewing my recent meeting when I observed in the lobby of the recreation center a mother and her mother (the grandmother) filling out the registration form to sign up their children for ballet classes.  The two women intently talking about the course and mom filling out the form with accuracy were so engrossed in the process.  They were so engrossed they weren’t noticing what the two little girls were off doing on the side.  As I sat there in awe and laughter I watched the ship slowly sink into the water.

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It started off simply with the “oh we get to walk around” the girls walk at first seemingly 4 or 5 or so they are giddish with laughter and then the toddler version of “walking” turns into chase because breaking it down children must run everywhere.  Walking isn’t instilled in their mental realm yet.  If only we are this energetic at 35.  Anyhow they start chasing each other and begin to hold onto the spiral upward ramp looking between the gap of the railing and wall to see their mother and wave giggling.  Then they stand over by the column and then become fascinated by the plastic tube stand for recycled batteries.  One girl tilts it toward her and starts yelling in it while the other goes back to wave to her mom.

After wards when the girl tries to reach for the batteries then goes off and in a jibberish talk goes to the end of the table and then runs away and laughs hiding behind the column with her sister.  Then the other girl does the same.  Then they repeat this run to the table-babble-run off process for about 2 minutes.  Sitting there I laugh cause it looks so funny but the parents are sooooo intent on filling out the papers that can they not see what is going on?! Wow!

Then the best part comes just as in a bank they have the line dividers and the kid’s run between and underneath them giggling and yelping in excitement and then one girl falls in surprise.  Still no parent reaction…. until this…. the receptionist comes out behind the desk and ask the mom to get ahold of the girls and asks them to be quiet since it’s making it hard for them to answer the phone and blocking the pathway for members entering the building (as they are running all over).

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It was only at that moment the mom looked up mortified and then reacted to their children’s actions – passing time of childlike antics 8 minutes.

Now how awfully embarrassing is that?!

965. Having to excuse yourself out of a row of seats

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Whether it’s the movie theater, a stage play theater performance, in the airplane, or at a ballpark game.  Sitting in the middle of the row just isn’t the best friend when you have sat through half of a performance / show and then it just hits you out of nowhere – that bean burrito salad and that 1/2 gallon peach iced tea just comes a rumbling through.  You think you can muster enough patience and “hold it” until  the intermission.  But your body’s telling you another story.

So in a form of slight discretion you look both ways of the aisle and figure what will be the best exit strategy.  Figuring that sitting in the middle of the row will give you the best view until this happens.  So as you scoot through you oddly have to shuffle your self to either face the person so oddly squat and shuffle by so that way you’re not sitting in their lap.

Thankfully as make haste as your stomach’s churning by you see a few more people to excuse.  Trying not to fall over purses and large shoes, this is an acrobatic test of balance and respect.  Then as you make it just towards the end, you pass gas just a little to make a light toot noise.  Scurry away before they give you a horrid look!

Great and now I have to pass back through the row, how awful is that?!

971. Public rest stops

Stretch those buns! by Neal Gillis.

Ah, the joys of road trips with friends, family, or alone.  On the open road and the wind is destiny and so does the rest room because the urge has now exploded into  fury of urgency and half of the people in the car are hungry and you need directions because the GPS has taken you off course 18 miles.

Oh that illustrious rest stop – the haven to refuel, eat, potty, get our essentials and go.

Let’s deconstruct the peculiarity of this place:

Entryway: its always a zoo outside of cars because everyone in the nearest area code decided to go for a ride to visit this place, so good luck finding parking.  Most of these places look like retro lodges and the newer ones look like down town plazas.  Does this place have a directory?

Main Building: as with the recession most of the small rest stops have been cut out from the state since well they were underkept and hardly utilized.   But for the main houses of rest stop areas it can be a mall of selections ranging from the tacky tourist gift shop, sunglasses stand, “what is this name” restaurant, and dungeon-like restrooms.  They can be decorated with fine state history and a wall map of state’s roadways from 3 years ago.  The decor is pretty lack luster and it smells of a bowling alley.

Wonderful-snow-globes-2

 

Tacky Tourist Gift Shop: junky state key chain? Check. I love the state T-shirt? Check.  “All I got was this stupid mug” glassware? Check. Candy that’s been out of commission? Check. Snow globes odd scenery? Check.

 

Sunglasses Stand: you’ve seen them at the mall most likely; the knockoff brands off sunglasses that are so greatly priced 2 or $20.  They’ll look so good they’ll fall off by the time you leave the parking lot! Good luck if you get that sticker off the lens!

 

“What is this name” Restaurant?“: The people could be less than thrilled you are there.  Sure bring a party of 7, cause it sure beats service at your neighborhood family restaurant, wait time 45 min.  One page menu’s and that one employee with the name you can’t pronounce and 3 accent marks in it.  All on the order!, serve it up!

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Dungeon-like Rest room: As you slowly wait your turn, you walk around the corner to the corral of stalls complete with wet floors, tissue paper wadded on the walls, and  grungy sink counters.

 

Gas Station Phone/Plaza: Drive on up to the station where an attendant will fill you up (in some states) or will stare at you as they give you a pack of gum . o O (guess I should’ve got it at the Gift Shop).  Gas pump is slow as molasses and the oil spots are slicker than Walden Pond ice on a winter morning. Dare even go to the payphones that still exist as a cold reminder to keep your cell phones charged.

Back on the road and would you have guessed 15 min later someone has to use the rest room – again?!

 

Now how awful is that?!

979. Realizing “what in the world did I just do with the last 10 years” of my life?

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Every December as the year comes to a close we prepare to reflect on what was and will be?  There comes a list of “Best of…” and the list of Worst of…” for that particular year, but if you’ve ever chronicled what you’ve done in highlights of each year for the decade, have you done all you could’ve done?  Is there more out there waiting yet to be discovered?

Don’t feel like time is slipping away, there is always a second longer to get in that extra laugh – just go out there and make the best of it, because as the next 10 years roll by quickly ahead, you’ll realize I could’ve wondering, now how awful is that?!

Make the most out of your 1st Day! Awfully Amazing!