Monday, August 15, 2011

the red shoes

I am on vacation this week in Sun Peaks, British Columbia, Canada.  Although known for its skiing, in summer it is picturesque, with hiking, horseback riding, and major mountain biking trails.  It is quiet during the week, but on the weekend it was chosen for a wedding spot for several couples.  One wedding, on Saturday, had lots of guests and was a big festive affair.  On Sunday evening, as I peered out our deck, I spotted another couple, standing alone, except for a photographer, out in the August sunshine.  The bride had a beautiful fifties style pure white dress on, with an ankle length full skirt and fitted bodice.  Her hair was swept up in a chignon, and she had a round bouquet--she looked like something out of the show, Mad Men.  And on her feet, were the most beautiful pair of t-strap high heels, in a gorgeous shade of red.  Her groom wore a suit, with a red tie, a slash of color that bound him perfectly to his beautiful bride.
The red shoes were not only enchanting, they got me to thinking.  A lot.  I went online searching for meaning of wearing red shoes with a wedding gown.  Finally, I concluded that its meaning will remain with the beautiful bride, however I am going to venture that wearing red shoes with your white gown shows passion, an expression of individuality, and love.
I love when people chose to be themselves, even if it means standing out.  There is such a difference between fearlessly showing yourself and trying too hard.  You know what they say, if you have to try too hard to be cool, well, then you probably aren't.  Personally, I like being a little different, and sometimes that works out for me and sometimes it doesn't, but its worth it all the same.
Back to the red shoes.  I felt oddly inspired by them.  This year I have had that feeling of wanting to try new things, of scaring myself maybe just a bit by being open to things in the past that I have been too afraid to do, even though I really wanted to.  I am not talking climbing Mt. Everest here.  Just some personal challenges that make me happy I tried them.  I have never been the most athletic person in the world and I always wished I was.  I admire all these outdoorsy types.  I am just a bit more at home with exploring a boutique than REI.  My lifelong hatred of hiking is still in place, but I would hit a bike trail any time, and think a mountain bike may be replacing my cruiser with the wicker basket soon enough.  And I am proud to say I work out and train regularly, something I could not have claimed to do ten years ago.
In February I pierced my nose with a tiny diamond.  Always wanted to do it and one Tuesday, I just did, and then went grocery shopping.  That may have been anticlimactic, but it made me happy, it felt great to do something I always wished I had. Its so small that it after an entire weekend with my parents I had to ask my Dad what he thought and he had no idea what I was talking about.  My Mom said, "At least its not your belly button." Um, ok?
This year I have been trying to figure out what to do with myself, when I wasn't caring for children, being a wife, a friend, a volunteer.  I love to write, it comes out of me in the same way I get an idea for what I want to wear. All of the sudden I just know, and it comes together.  I come from a long line of writers, most notably my paternal grandfather, who was the night editor of The Billings Gazette, and my older brother, Tom, who has written Emmy winning television programs, television series, and a few blockbuster movies.  He is naturally funny, amazingly smart and articulate, as are all of my three siblings.   Although I do not possess the same writing talents as my relatives, I like to think that you are good at the things you love, and to follow that path will work in your favor.
Remember back in the 80's when David Bowie sang, "Let's dance, put on our red shoes and dance the blues"?  I am fairly certain I have got a pair of red shoes somewhere in that color coded closet of mine.  They may be just what I need to remind myself to approach my life with the same individuality, passion and love that I saw in that bride standing in the sunshine here in beautiful Canada.  Cheers.

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