Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Shaking Some Sand From My Shoes

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote a post after hiking the Pinnacle trail at Crowder's Mountain State Park. During my descent, I noticed something in my left boot. This something worked its way down to my arch, and I had to stop to take off my boot in order to remove a small stone that had worked its way in. At the time, I thought how important it is to take care of minor irritations before they become major problems.

There has been many a time when I carried things, either painful or pleasurable, for way too far down the mountain. One particular stone I carry has both characteristics, yet I carry it along. Maybe I was made for the bittersweet, but I have learned that it is important to keep stones out of my shoes, and to keep them tucked away in a place where they will not cause harm to myself or to others.

Old songs keep coming to mind...
"Son can you play me a memory I'm not really sure how it goes But it's sad and it's sweet And I knew it complete When I wore a younger man's clothes" - Billy Joel
I had forgotten about the incident on the mountain until this past week when I was driving home from Columbia one day. The old time gospel station had faded out, and I hit the "Seek" button on my radio which started playing this song by the Drifters,

Oh, the boardwalk's deserted

There's nobody down by the shore
And the Ferris wheel ride
Isn't turning around any more
The heat wave and the crowds
Are just old news

But I've still got some sand in my shoes.

* (Sand in my shoes)
  Brings mem'ries of the salty air
  (Sand in my shoes)
  Whoa-uh-oh-oh, the blanket that we used to share
  How we fell in love down by the sea
  Comes back to me (I've still got some sand)
  With the sand in my shoes.

When the water was cold
You would tremble and hold me so tight
And we'd sit on the beach
Just to wait for the stars to come out at night
The heat wave and the crowds
Are just old news
But I've still got some sand in my shoes.
* Refrain...
The poor singer hasn't realized that the sand in his shoes might cause a blister if he doesn't do something about it. He might decide to shake the sand from his shoes, or he might write  a popular song and memorialize the moment, but if his memory is elephantine like mine, he might wind up putting a little in his pocket so he can sprinkle some here and there as he walks down the trail leading away from the past.


  1. I did not know when I made this post that today's readings would include Luke 9:1-17,

    The Mission of the Twelve
    1 Then Jesus called the twelve together and gave them power and authority over all demons and to cure diseases, 2 and he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal. 3 He said to them, ‘Take nothing for your journey, no staff, nor bag, nor bread, nor money—not even an extra tunic. 4 Whatever house you enter, stay there, and leave from there. 5Wherever they do not welcome you, as you are leaving that town shake the dust off your feet as a testimony against them.’ 6 They departed and went through the villages, bringing the good news and curing diseases everywhere.

  2. I can see the "sand/rock in shoes" metaphor extending to a lot of biblical themes. Too bad you can't copyright it.