This blog contains material I wrote and posted on between the years 2005 and 2011 only. It does not contain any new material. For newer writing, please check my main blog (Bill the Butcher).

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Mishap On The Steps

We were coming down the ancient stone steps when your sandal strap broke.

“Hold on,” you said.

She looked at you. I looked at you. Neither of us said anything.

“My strap broke,” you explained, taking the sandal off and holding it up for our inspection.

“Yes. I saw.”

“What are you going to do about it?”

“What are we going to do about it?” I asked. And, “What do you want us to do about it?” she asked.

“I don’t know. Fix it.”

“How do I fix it? We don’t have anything to fix it with. At least I don’t.” I turned to her. “Do you have a needle and strong thread?”

“No. Why should I have a needle and strong thread?”

“I don’t know. I don’t know why anyone should have a needle and strong thread.” I searched my pockets and my bag. “I don’t have a needle and strong thread.”

“I don’t even have any kind of thread,” she said. “Not even the weak thin sort.”

“There, you see.” I turned back to you. “How do you expect us to fix it?”

You rubbed your bare foot on the stone of the stairs. “And what am I supposed to do? I can’t wear this without a strap.”

“How should I know?” She shrugged prettily. “Do without it.”

“Easy to say. I can’t do without it, not all that way.”

“You know,” I told her appreciatively, “that rhymed. I thought she was telling us last night that she couldn’t make anything rhyme.”

“You shouldn’t trust her,” she said. “She lies sometimes.”

“Stop talking about me as if I’m not here,” you said.

“She lies? I didn’t know that.”

“I’ve known her longer than you’ve known her.”

“I said,” you said angrily, stomping the other foot, the shod one, on the step, “don’t talk about me as if I weren’t –“ Then you stopped dismayed, because the stiletto heel of the other sandal caught in a crack in the rock and broke off. “Look what happened now!” you said.

“Looks like you’ll have to do without now,” she told you, grinning.

“I can’t,” you wailed. “I can’t do it. My feet hurt if I have to go without shoes.”

“All right,” she shrugged. “Use mine.” She took off her own flats and handed them over. “Much better for this sort of terrain than your heels anyway.”

“Do they fit you?” I asked, watching as you put them on.

“Yes…they do.” But then you looked up at her, with a flush in your cheeks. “But what about you? You don’t have anything to wear.”

“Oh, don’t worry about me,” she said airily. “I adore going barefoot!”

We continued down towards the beach.

Copyright B Purkayastha 2008

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