Walking a new path…without shoes

by caroanna

We all want to keep our life interesting and try out new things. They can be small changes or they can be bold. I think my last one was a small one, but I know that for some people, this would be unacceptable: I walked barefoot to campus.

And I plan on doing that again. A lot. It was absolutely amazing!

I must add that it was an unusually warm day and I’m not one of those hardcore barefooters like Leo Babauta from Zen Habits, who would probably even walk without shoes through snow. I admire that willpower, but it’s just too cold for me.

However, summer is close and I’m ready to leave my shoes at home and start feeling what I’m walking on. I noticed that I’m always barefoot when thinking about walking somewhere in my meditations, so why not try it in real life?

It was odd, at first, and hurt a little. But the more I walked, the more I rejoiced. I felt all kinds of things under my feet, from different stones to grass to pure earth…I was very aware of myself, my walking and my surroundings (also because I had to be careful not to step on glass…).

Sure, shoes have their advantage. They warm you, they protect you, they look good. But turns out there’s nothing better on a warm summer day than feeling (not losing) the ground under your feet!

After a while, you start to ignore the odd looks on other people’s faces. It only shows they care.

By the way, I got some helpful tips on walking barefoot, esp. in cities, on barefooting.eu and from the FAQs on Libaware.

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