This little pink shoes were next to the $300 Italian loafers on the counter. In the shoe repair shop, two other men and a bored looking woman were picking up fancy leather handbags or resoled dress shoes. I was picking up the Hatchbacks with the Velcro on the sides.
“Those are mine.” I said as I picked them up, the other people in the foyer smiling that I was picking up the little pink shoes. I was sure those were the only shoes for a four year old girl in the whole place.
See most moms and dads just get a new pair. But Teresa and I – well these are special shoes, and if we can get them repaired, that’s another thing we don’t need to spend top dollar on for my girl.
I didn’t know this before I had a daughter who needed special shoes. Anything “medical” costs extra. The stroller with the harness so she won’t double over and fall out – extra. The bed with the rails so she won’t roll out – extra. Her wheel chair with the fancy tray, seat that can be set to recline, and shock absorbers – that was made in Germany and had the decimal point moved to the right to prove it.
“No charge” the clerk said, after consulting with Mario – the owner and the guy who told me to come get them after lunch today. I had dropped them off this morning, knowing Mario could fix them and I wouldn’t have to spend $80 on another pair of shoes.
And Mario, he must have seen those little shoes, designed to fit around the little plastic ankle braces (called DAFOS) and thought I could use a break. I didn’t *need* the break. I just appreciated that he appreciated it. A few minutes on the sewing machine would normally be $18. But maybe he looked at those little shoes and thought, special shoes for a special girl – I’ll do my part.
So I’ll be back to Mario’s place, to get my loafers resoled or a leather bag fixed. Because that’s the kind of guy I want to do business with. When you have a big heart, it’s not always about the cash. Sometimes you just need to fix a pair of little pink shoes. The little girl who will wear them can’t walk on her own now, but someday she will, and it will be partly because she had the right shoes on today.
That’s the kind of thing you always remember, and appreciate.