"Look at that little boy's boots!" the lady exclaimed. "They are adorable!"
We were in Jo-Ann Fabric, which they love and feel right at home in. After all, they have strolled its aisles since before they were born.
"Oh my goodness, how old is he? His BOOTS are sooooo CUTE!"
Three or four other commenters followed in quick succession. Little girls, mothers, grandmothers, and even one elder gentleman - they all felt that they absolutely must comment on the boots. The man looked at us as we passed, with something resembling nostalgia in his eyes. "Oh those boots just bring me right back to my boyhood. I begged my mamma to get me some o' them, until she just had to. Got 'em when I was just knee high, and wouldn't take them off for nobody. Had to sleep in 'em!"
This was sweet. I tried to keep an eye on the carts while responding to the man. "Oh yes, he just loves these boots. His other grandmother gave them to him."
Thankfully there was still plenty of space between the two carts. This can be important for the comfort and sanity of everyone in the store. One does not want to get entrenched in a cart war (not that those darlings would ever, ahh -)
Grandma was keeping a close eye on events but was momentarily distracted..and *bump* went the second cart into the small girl pushing the first."Hey!" she of course said. But Grandma giggled and said, "Oh dear, that happened to me and your uncle, when he was a boy."
"What, Grandma?" she asked.
"Well, your uncle was pushing the shopping cart behind me at the Commissary, and I was afraid he would run into my heels with it. 'DON'T bang into my heels, please - yikes, be careful now, don't hit my ankles. STOP!! you almost bashed..' and so on. Then I became distracted while pushing the cart, and - WHAM! into his heels I ran - after all that nagging! I'm afraid he was not very happy.."
As we four proceeded down through the store, people kept commenting about the boots. "Mommy! look at that boy's cowboy boots!" said one little girl. "I want some just like his. PLEASE???"
The small boy had no idea of the reaction his cowboy boots were producing around him. None. It happened, but he was blissfully unaware. One day he will notice, and everything will change. But until then we can all rest in the knowledge that he, and his boots, can be adorably anonymous, together.
See you along the way!