The Lost Shoe
A story by Shaily Kapil Kalra
“Meera, Meera !!” cried Ravi. Meera came running from the kitchen quickly drying her wet arms in her saree. “Yes dear, what is it?” She asked in agony as she was making breakfast. “Have you seen my new black colour leather shoe?”, Ravi asked. As had happened multiple times in the past, her answer was ‘No’. She knew their son must have tried his father’s shoe and must have hid them in his toy shelf. [Just to protect her little son, Mohit , she preferred to lie to her husband.]
“Meera !!!” , said Ravi” I know you are trying to save our boy and not telling me where the other shoe is. Its a new pair of shoes, I’m holding one of the shoes in my hand and still searching the other one”.
Meera couldn’t stop giggling, Ravi still holding one shoe in his hand said, ”No it is not funny. …. ” . Before he could complete his sentence Meera laughed out loud.
“Just look at yourself Ravi, you have wrapped yourself in a towel and searching for your shoe. I thought today you will be going to the office in your towel and shoes.” she added.
Suddenly Ravi’s eyes were glued to the mirror hanging on the wall at a distance. His appearance looked so funny that for a while they both laughed.
After some time, before going to work, Ravi told Meera to search for his new black pair of shoes as he has to attend a very important meeting the next day.
After Ravi left for work Meera looked in Mohit’s room and found the other pair of shoe, in the toys shelf just as she had expected. She was happy to see the shoe, but her happiness didn’t last long as it was not in good condition.
She was worried and terrified. Ravi had brought a new pair of black colour shoes, he was looking forward to wearing them the next day for his meeting.
For a while, she sat there holding the shoes in her hands wondering what could be done. There was no way to make it look new again.
One major challenge on her head was to explain her eight-year-old boy that while trying his father’s shoe he had spoiled it. The shoe was having lines at the centre and looked used while the other in comparison looked very new.
She had no other option except to sit and cry and worry that she would have to see her little one getting beaten up by his father just for trying his new pair of shoes.
She waited for her son to come back from school, she had thought of talking and explaining to him what wrong he had done.
As soon as he came from school, he hugged Meera with his tiny arms. Mother loved her little boy. In playing with her son and completing the household chores she forgot everything about the shoe.
When Ravi came in the evening the first thing he did was search for his shoe. He was very happy to see his black pair of shoes. “Finally Meera, you searched for them, I knew it must be in our boy’s room” said Ravi.
But when he looked at them carefully, his happiness turned into anger. One looked perfectly new and the other looked old and used. “Meera, how will I wear these tomorrow? You have no other work except for looking after our young son. I don’t believe that you can’t even do that properly. You are such an irresponsible lady,” said Ravi.
Ravi screamed very hard,” come here, boy.” Mohit knew his father was upset and was in a bad temper. He entered the room slowly, his eyes teary, and his legs trembling.
He was wearing his father’s brown shoe this time. On seeing this, Ravi smiled as anger was swept off his face . He hugged his little son and embraced him. Ravi, said to Meera,” I was about to raise my hand on our little boy without realising my son tries to copy me because he admires me. I am so lucky to have such a wonderful boy Meera.”
“I missed the lovely moment of him putting on my shoe and walking in the house. I can buy a new pair of shoes Meera but I can’t buy these lovely memories forever. I am sorry Meera for being so harsh on you.” Ravi concluded.
Ravi told Mohit to wear his shoes, Mohit innocently said, “Papa, I wear only one shoe. “. Ravi, said,” Today you wear both of them. Papa will make a video and will also capture the memories in photographs.”