While on a journey to New York City at some point over the past year, a pair of shoes caught my attention. Neatly placed at the top of the stairs, just off the entrance of the subway. Well-worn dress shoes.
Why were those shoes there? Lost by a drunken reveler after a night on the town? Dropped from the bag of a commuter on his way to work?
I was very tempted to put on the shoes, to wear them just for a while, perhaps to walk a mile in that man’s shoes. Yet I did not. The shoes looked too small and I thought it would be awkward to explain to passers-by why I was putting on the abandoned shoes. Once they were on, no one would know that they had been left by my unknown soul – but that transition from neatly placed on the pavement to wrapped around my feet would potentially be an awkward one. Perhaps even confrontational.
I walked on in my own loafers.