Thursday, July 19, 2012

Shoeless on International Drive

As I had mentioned in my last blog that I have spent the last several days at ICRS or CBA a very large Christian retailing convention that was awesome for me to go to. I was able to network with several publishers, and from here I’m continuing to believe that God opens the doors he wants opened. But I have to tell you of a mistake that I made on the first day. But really it wasn’t just my mistake. It was the honest mistake of most girls everywhere who simply are trying to look cute. It was the dreaded footwear mistake! (Cue overly dramatic nightmare music) I had thought I had a planned this, I would wear not so cute heels and therefore my feet would be able to walk for the miles I needed to walk. My friend who’d gone to the conference with me did what most girls do. She reasoned in her mind that she could do this and opted for the cute heels. Together we set off to network. In about an hour I was in pain but trying not to show it and my friend was looking longingly to the scooter rentals. I know she was trying to reason in her mind why she needed one, and perhaps we both would have been game for a Segway race through the event. Both of us were near tears, and I knew my feet were about to go on strike. They were going to simply refuse to go any longer. Neither of us brought better footwear, and while we both hated to leave this event we both knew if we didn’t find better shoes to wear soon a security guard would have to carry us out off the event floor like a sack of potatoes. Truthfully, at that point I wasn’t sure I would care. That would at least mean I didn’t have to wear those shoes. Being that we were in the Orange County Convention Center I could think of nothing really close to buy some cheap shoes. We needed something quick. OCCC is the center of some of the touristiest sections of Orlando, and sits on International Drive. My only solution was get to the Walgreens that I thought was just down the road. I knew Walgreens would at least sell flip flops and we could only hope for a decent looking pair. Neither one of us wanted to walk all the way back to the car nor I thought the Walgreens was fairly close. As we began walking neither of us could handle it any longer. Now shoeless, the pain of our feet was like walking on nails embedding in the sidewalk. Perhaps had we been on a normal sidewalk it wouldn’t have been so bad, but this sidewalk was at least 1000 degrees and glowing from the heat. We kept jumping in the grass for moments of respite, silently begging for any kind of relief. The hot Florida sun had baked the sidewalk to a crisp. Our feet now in shoe torture pain had merged into a knee jerking, face squinting, anguish walk. We experienced our own minor ‘Trail of Tears’ in the sun beaten, barefoot walk, on I- drive. Finally we opted to go get the car, run across the black top (that was 1001 degrees), and got to the Walgreens. Where we did find some decent footwear, and eventually made our way back to the event. But in the meantime I had two texts that I was supposed to go meet people at the event, our time gone was eventually made up for but the pain in our feet was still a reminder of our folly. Honestly I remember thinking briefly that morning I should take my flats and put them in my bag, just in case. If only I would have listened to that thought. I keep jokingly thinking of the scripture in Matthew 25 about the 10 virgins. 5 had the lamp oil and were ready and the other 5 had to run out and buy the oil and missed the bridegroom. The parable speaks as a reminder to be prepared. You must learn to live your life so prepared that when the time comes you are ready for it. As I mentioned everything worked out, and our time gone was made up. But I will laugh at this memory and try to always carry a pair of flip flops or flats in my carryon bag just in case. You have to be prepared in life. You have to go with the flow, but be ready for the unexpected. Perhaps just maybe I should have listened to my gut reaction and brought the flats in the first place. It is true we have to be excited for what God has for us in life, but we also have to be prepared! Remember He does have awesome plans for your life. So get excited & carry flip flops!

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