Walk A Mile With My Shoe


 Remember the kid I saw pulling his shoe down the sidewalk? If you don’t, you need to read my post When Does Weird Cross the Line? before you read any more of this one. I ran into the kid again this morning, and things got interesting—as in… we’ve crossed the line.

The two other occasions I saw the young man—he appears to be ten or eleven years old—he was walking down the sidewalk, coming toward me. Both times, he had a shoe—an old black lace-up loafer—tied to a rope, and he was dragging the shoe behind him. The first time, I jokingly asked if he was walking his shoe—he said, yes—and the second time we didn’t speak.

This morning, he walked up beside me, startling me.

I didn’t recognize him until I heard an odd thumping noise, and looked back to see the scuffed loafer bouncing along behind him. I stopped in my tracks, but he kept walking

“Hey!” I said, hurrying to catch him. He stopped, but the shoe went bouncing past him, doing a back flip when it reached the end of the rope. It lay there, on the sidewalk, somehow appearing quite pitiful.

“That’s a pretty good trick!” I said, nodding at the shoe. “How do you do it?”

He shrugged small shoulders and grinned shyly.

I pressed him for an answer. “Is it a magic trick?”

He looked around, apparently to see if anyone was watching, then held his hand close to his chest and pointed toward the sky. I looked up then looked back at him. His eyes were wide, and he was looking so intently at me. The shoe slid slowly over to hide behind him. It suddenly dawned on me what he’d meant when he pointed toward the sky.

“God?” I said. He smiled, and I suddenly felt as if I were being hugged and could feel it in every fiber of my physical being. I knew it was love embracing me—God’s love—and it was  literally beyond description.

I whispered, “Why?”

The boy began to shimmer and fade, but his voice was still clearly audible. “He wants to know if you’ll walk a mile with my shoe,” he said.

Then he was gone, but the shoe was still there. As I stared at it, it suddenly flipped in the air then began to flop crazily down the sidewalk. I chased after it, and when I stepped on the rope, it leapt high into the air and landed on its side.

I had no idea what to do, but the boy’s words kept replaying in my mind. “He wants to know if you’ll walk a mile with my shoe.”

I looked to the heavens and asked in a quiet voice, “Is this some kind of test?”

I heard the young boy laugh then say, “Yep.”

I picked up the shoe and hurried home.


Read part three —> Bring it, Scuff Boy! 


  1. Sherry Mashburn said

    Well, that explains the shoe in the hallway!!!!

    Cool story, Charlie!

    • Did it say anything to you? I keep thinking it should be able to talk, but it won’t say anything.

  2. JD said

    Well done Charlie. Love it. ~The Uneasy Supplicant

    • Dad gummit! Now I got to go look up uneasy supplicant! What’d you go and do that to me for?
      Glad you enjoyed it, and I appreciate the comment (at least til I see what it means)

    • Okay, I’m a little dense sometimes. YOU are the uneasy supplicant! Good grief.

      • JD said

        LOL .. .happens all the time. BTW … should have elaborated more. YOUR work is wonderful my friend. Heading over to the feeds button as soon as I post this comment. Take care. ~JD

      • I got way ahead of myself on that one. Had a busy day and was in the middle of answering a lot of comments–for which I am very greatful. I sure felt like a dope when I realized what I’d done. But THAT’S nothing new! Thanks again for the wonderful comments and compliments!

  3. Well Mr Mashburn this was a challenge to me… and somehow i’m left with a bit of an ache… even though it’s funny, and enjoyable… because as I read it I’m so frustrated at how elusive the boy is, and I want to hang out with Him and ask more questions but he’s gone and I have this horrible feeling that I’m just going to have to bally trust him and take the shoe for a walk even though I don’t have the answers and it’s just, it’s an adventure but it’s not fair!! hahahah… i’m rambling and making no sense! Great story, loved it! Thank you. :] xx

    • You sound like my wife, Sherry, Catie. She is my editor (we don’t edited blog stories) and when I’m writing novels, she reads them chapter by chapter as I write them, and gets so frustrated because I love to end my chapters with a cliff-hanger or other mystery. Then, it may be weeks before she gets the next chapter. (I love doing this to her.) As for this little story about the boy and his shoe, I have no idea where it might go from here, but I believe it wil have some good lessons to it. One of my friends on Facebook made me laugh yesterday, saying, “This better not be about drinking more Ovaltine, or something!” This story is typical of my fiction writing, in that it has a mind of its own, and has not yet revealed to me what will happen next. The only hint I can give you, is that it will be uplifting and encouraging. I can surmise this, by referring to the boy pointing to the sky as an answer.
      Don’t worry about your rambling. As you can see, I am a rambler from waaayyy back. I really enjoy it when a reader comments with such enthusiasm and depth. (It makes perfect sense to me, so maybe it’s a rambler to rambler thing.)
      As for the story, I have another part almost ready to post and it will taunt and tantalize you even more than the first. I should have it ready to post on Wednesday. Cheers!

      • Ha well, I look forward to the next installment with eagerness for the fun and hesitance for the frustration ;] ! I’m amazed at how prolifically you blog, but it’s a good thing cause you have much fun and wisdom to share… however before I get caught up in reading all the one’s i’ve not read yet I really SHOULD get back to work, and sadly my work is not as fun as writing novels. :] Blessings toy ou, yor wife and your pet shoe. ;] hahaha xx

      • I have another installment ready, but was waiting to see if anyone’s curiosity jumped up and demanded to see it. I often feel like folks don’t care for these broken up stories. I’ve tried different ways of posting them, and actually, you are the first–except for Sherry–that has said anything, good, bad, or indifferent, about the cliff hanging I so looove to do. Let’s see… okay… the vote is 2-0 to post, so coming right up!
        Thanks, Catie! I love your visits and comments. A blessing to my day!

  4. Mom said

    Hey Charlie, I thought this was a true story until the very end, has this been a Charlie thing all along or was there really a boy pulling a shoe
    one day?

    • The first story was true, Mom. This I’m making up as I go along. You know how that goes; I don’t even know what’s gonna happen til it happens! Stay tuned; I think it’s gonna be a good one!

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