I hated the buckle girlie-shoes from Bata, I loved Naughty boy shoes, but when I got kicked, I got kicked badly. Admired Liberty shoes but never got to wear them. I used to reach school early and I normally sweat my guts out playing ready-ready with a few others. Before even Assembly began, my shoes were a dusty brown. Never got penalized. I had ways to get them cleaned. Running them on your black socks by the shin was such fun and easy, and if you dint want to dirty them, then use some thermocole. You have to bear that funny annoying noise but it works.
When Papa was away and Ma was busy attending to 2-month old Bunty, she caned me one afternoon with the clothesline bamboo for getting my shoes dirty before Assembly. It’s funny because she got the longest stick which was difficult to maneuver and I hopped from one side to the other. I never dirtied my shoes after that. I only made them worse in the rainy months. The instruction is never to step outside, your shoes will tell the truth. I used to step outside only during the 3rd period for a toilet break and it used to rain heavily and my shoes go soggy. I tell the truth, if I had played in the rain, I would have caught a cold or a fever. Papa threatened to not send me to school if the shoes don’t dry and I was never allowed rainy boots.The sun alwys unfailingly showed up.
Once I was a big girl, that is class-5, I became super finicky about my shoes. Nobody should even step on them by mistake. After that, Papa never had to use much polish. Classmates laughed at me that I don’t polish my shoes and that I make Papa work. I fought with them many times. But hey, Papa has taught us how to polish shoes, just that he enjoys doing that for his children. Today, Papa misses doing those small lil’ things for any of his children, because we have all grown up and we have our ways and means of cleaning, polishing and maintaining them.It is another ritual when after breakfast I go and stand infront of Papa asking him to tie my shoe-laces. I always trusted him for that and also, that I will never trip on my shoe-laces if Papa did them. I learned doing them when I was a big girl :)