When Chongo was young, he had a problem remembering his shoes. It’s one of the pitfalls of living in California, I guess – the weather only occasionally being cold enough to make a kid consider his feet.
One day we missed a movie when barefoot boy was discovered and we had to go back home. Occasional we’d stop at Target to buy a pair of flip flops. I finally made him pay for them from his own allowance.
“How can you forget your shoes?” I would ask. But I knew the answer. When you are battling mythical beasts with only a sword or flying through space avoiding asteroids by a hairsbreath, shoes seem insignificant.
At one point I grew tired of reminding him to put his shoes on for school, and put a yellow post it on the door to remind him. There were days I saw him walk up to it and read it with surprise, “oh, right! Shoes.”
Eventually we outgrew the sticky note, the frustrating trips with our shoeless boy. The teenager doesn’t need reminders; ratty converse sneakers hang daily at the end of his long legs. But I miss that boy who had no room in his brain to remember his shoes. And I have to ask: What did he have to forget in order to remember his shoes?