Sunday, April 12, 2015

New Shoes

Shoes, Glorious Shoes

        I love shoes, I absolutely love them. I can even have some sympathy for Imelda Marcos. I really have to stay away from the shoe stores. Though feet and finances and fashion prevent the acquisition of most of the shoes I see today shoe stores are  wonderful places to dream. This week we drove back to Ho to get a pair of hand made black leather scandals that we had ordered the week before. Last week we discussed style and cost and they were measured in the most rudimentary way but let me tell you I have never been so excited to see the results. I have never ordered a pair of specially designed, hand crafted shoes before. 

        I know that you are anxious to see these very special shoes but before you think me very pretentious let me tell you that, actually, they were not for me, not even for Barry or any of you, my special readers, but I could not have been more excited if they were. They were for Wisdom. Who, you ask? Wisdom.

        Wisdom is this wonderful young man of 19 that is a member of the Church in the Tsito Branch that I have mentioned before. He lives with his grandmother and younger brother. Wisdom was born in his grandmother's house. His parents are divorced. His mother has remarried and lives near Accra. His dad is sometimes in Tsito, sometimes Accra. None of this is different from many youth and their families around the world but their are many things about Wisdom that just endear him to everyone he meets. He is nice looking, quiet, always so polite. He is the Branch Clerk so he is trusted with the branch funds. He is good with the computer and so willing to learn that he traveled once all day to Accra to get some computer training at the Area Office and then traveled back so late at night.

        He has adopted Barry as a surrogate father and calls to check in or ask questions and never fails to ask about me as well. Wisdom wants to go on a mission for the Church, to fulfill a two year commitment. Barry is helping him with his mission application and the papers needed to get a passport. All this still seems fairly normal for many 19 year olds in the Church. What makes Wisdom different is that he was born with a club foot that was never corrected. He walks on the top of his right foot and he has learned to walk very well that way. No where that you walk here is usually on any kind of a level surface so walking is always difficult. Wisdom has walked everywhere all his life. He walks the two plus miles to church each way every Sunday and often again during the week and of course all his life to school.

        These are Wisdom's first real shoes. We are experimenting to find him something that would suit him on a two year mission. He has always had to wear something that showed the severity of his foot and as we were there ordering the shoes I sensed that he would like to have it covered. There was nothing that was verbally expressed but it was a feeling that I got. It was a young man's tender feelings of some desire to be as much as possible like others.

        No shoes for myself will ever have the same impact again. No matter how much I like them they will never make me smile that big. But shoes, glorious shoes, will always make me think of a young man's first real pair of shoes and his first socks.

The beauty of pure joy.
New shoes and new socks.

Will they fit?

They fit.

Now with the socks.

When your work is a blessing to someone. Smile.

1 comment:

  1. I too adore shoes though I am limited in styles that will comfortably stay on my feet. This has to be one of the best things I have read! Thank you for sharing! I hope he loves his new shoes! Keep us posted on his mission process! I am happy to cheer him on!!!!--Heidi :)