these old boots. save for the laces, which were definitely in-beaky’s-book-worth-saving, these boots are now moving on. looking at them, side by side on the deck, i could hear my big brother playing the guitar and singing, “these boots were made for walking, and that’s just what i’ll do…”
we’ve run out of everest movies to watch. we have seen all the hollywood movies, all the national geographic movies, all the north face and eddie bauer movies and the rolex movies. we have watched youtubes and imax-without-the-max-part. we have sat through short home videos and a two hour and three minute go-pro video with no narration and hardly any talking. we’ve watched k2 and annapurna and aconcagua and denali. we have run out.
we have now moved on to the appalachian and pacific crest trails. these boots – neither pair – were not made for that walking. we can both vouch for it.
these boots were different. they were more life-boots. mine took me through well over a decade of travel, well over a decade of wholesale and retail shows, well over a decade of schlepping, lugging, driving very long distances, more schlepping and lugging. well over a decade of practice on wooden stages while lighting and sound engineers ran cues. well over a decade of flatbed trailers. well over a decade of dreaming and sweating, well over a decade of highs and lows.
i’ve been attached to them. the soles have separated from the leather uppers and wearing them would be like wearing closed flip flops, but heavy-heavy and flopping around, looking to catch on something and throw me headfirst into the ground.
i’ve been attached to them. in some way they became part of my uniform, the same way that the black zip-up sweatshirt that no longer has cuffs or a working zipper was. i’m attached to that too. somehow, it felt like those kept me safe, kept me going, and brought me back home. i suspect it wasn’t the boots or the sweatshirt hoodie.
so i’m saving the laces. they can be used in a different pair of boots.
and i’m wondering: maybe we should fill these old boots up with dirt and plant some basil.