Shiny shoes

by lulujane on April 28, 2016

As a very young child there was a shoemaker shop a couple of blocks from where I lived. When I walked by I loved hearing the sound of the machinery that drove the belts, and I have memory of the smell of leather, shoe polish and glue that drifted out an opening door.

When shoes were taken for repair, as shoddy as they may have looked when handed over to the master in the black, brown and oxblood polish stained apron, even if the repair was a small one, they were returned to the owner shining like the sun, restored to their former brilliance.

Last week I took a pair of shoes to a local shoe repair shop, leaving them to have a heel replaced. When I returned to pick them up, the finish on the leather was as dull as when I dropped them off. While I realize that I did not pay for a spit polish, and the heels were expertly done, I was surprised that I felt a level of disappointment.

Many craftsman see the finished product they present as a reflection of themselves, their art, and go above and beyond what is expected to show what they can do. This makes ‘them’ shine.

When my shoes didn’t shine it gave me pause, and in a negative way, speaking about myself, I made a judgment about my perception of the level of care I received, even though the work I paid for was performed in a professional way.

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