“The Trail of Bread Crumbs”

One night I was pedicuring a client when it came time to put her flip flops on. She apologized for using old flip flops that she’d dug out of the depths of her closet & said I should please excuse their look. No problem. I’d seen worse. We finished up, removed the toe separators & I was preparing to walk her out to her car since it was after dark.

As she started walking across the tile salon floor, there came a squeaky sort of noise that continued with each step. It sounded like she was sticking to the floor or something & we both commented that the floor must’ve just been waxed. I was walking ahead of her to unlock the front door & as I held the door open for her to pass by, I noticed some bread crumbs on the floor behind her.

Nothing too out of the ordinary for the reception area, since clients were always snacking on something while waiting for their appointments. Then I noticed that my client was having difficulty walking across the parking lot. It looked as though her flip flops were sticking to the sidewalk & she was struggling to lift each leg up, as if her legs were too heavy. It sort of looked like she was walking on the moon in slow motion & I thought “WTH?”!

I noticed with each step, the trail of bread crumbs behind her got longer & pieces were appearing everywhere around her! As she got next to her vehicle, she leaned onto it for support. It was dark outside, so all I could really see was her standing in a large mess of white bread crumbs. Crumbs were scattered all over the ground. Big pieces, little pieces……it was a huge mess! I noticed the heel (the crusty end piece) of the bread was lying next to her foot & my 1st thought was “What the heck was someone doing with a loaf of bread in the parking lot?”

Then I heard my client ask for help! I came over to where she was leaning against the vehicle & that’s when it became evident that these were not bread crumbs. These white crumbly things were the remnants of her old flip flops! With every step she took they disintegrated further into pieces!

By now all that pretty much remained of the flip flops was the rubber strap part that went across her foot & between the toes, plus a very thin layer of sole. What I thought was the heel of a loaf of bread was actually the instep to one of the flip flops! We were both shocked & amazed, to say the least. My client opened her car door & sat on the seat with her legs hanging out of the car so that I could gently slip the remains of her flip flops off her feet without messing up her freshly polished toes. It was crazy!

Needless to say, she had to drive home barefoot (so much for keeping her feet soft & smooth). We both had such a big laugh over it tho! After several days of contemplating, I finally figured out what had happened. The flip flops were old & dry rotted. When she placed her foot onto my knee so that I could polish her toes, the sole of the flip flop bent backwards & that just did them in. It would be kind of like bending the binding of a book backwards (say that 5 times fast), so the hard, old foam/rubber just broke apart.

She actually made it home without messing up her polish, which was another amazing thing unto itself. She was a good sport & we joked for months about her “Heels of Time”!  So far this was the ONLY instance when a clients foot wear disintegrated before my very eyes!

Heels of Time photo copy