The Magic Shoe Company

 Yesterday our granddaughter Tori came to pick up a cheque that had arrived in our mailbox and stayed for a visit with her mom, Brenda and me. In the course of the conversation, we talked about customer satisfaction. However, I can’t recall how we got onto that topic, only that it reminded me of my satisfying conclusion of a slipper purchase almost a month earlier. 

We were all sitting on the floor at the time to be less threatening to her shy dog, Kevin, so I pointed to my feet stretched out in front of me—and my new slippers with their moccasin-like uppers, cozily trimmed and lined with faux-fur. Tori appraised them approvingly, “They’re nice,” she said. 

“I love them,” I said, “but the first pair I bought after spending forever choosing them and thinking they were perfect began to pinch after several hours of wearing them around the house. Thinking I’d get used to them, I kept them on despite the discomfort and even dropped something on them in the kitchen, which I wiped off with a damp cloth. The next morning, I opened the shoebox to break it down for recycling and saw the store’s mission statement on the inside of the lid. It said that they wanted every customer to be pleased with their shoe purchase, and if they changed their mind about the fit or style after the purchase, they should return them.” I said that it sounded so convincing that I went back the next day and exchanged them for the ones I was now wearing, “And” I said, “even as I was leaving The Magic Shoe Company, the sales assistant reminded me, ‘If there’s any problem, even up to 90 days, you can bring them back.'”

“Mom,” said Bren, who was with me for the purchase of the first pair of slippers, “that wasn’t the name of the shoe store,” and she began to laugh at the fanciful name she was sure I'd made up.

I am never wholly confident in my memory for details, but I knew that I had the receipt on file. “Find it!” said Bren, so I scrambled to my feet and went upstairs to look. I found my receipts of that day, one from Soft Mocs, where I had purchased a pair of lovely dark brown suede slippers for Paul, and the receipt for mine—from The Famous Shoe Store. Humbly I went downstairs to admit I’d been wrong, to more laughter from Bren.

 Ah, the whims and creativity of memory! I read a Russian insult recently that bears this out, “He lies like an eye-witness.” How true that is! Even Bren, although she knew my quirky store name was not right, did not recall the correct one. I comfort myself with that thought!


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