"Hi, today is
stuff a bag day. Would you like one?" the clerk
"What is stuff a bag
"You take a bag
and stuff it with what ever you want and it's
$3. Best deal in town."
great," I said, despite the fact I hadn't planned
I took my
six-year-old daughter's hand and we started to
around. Suddenly there was a tug on my hand
and my attention was
being directed to the shoe
She shares my
weakness for shoes, so we stopped for a minute
look. I let go of her hand and she reached out to
touch a pair of
shiny black shoes with a strap and silver
"Buy me?" she
"Oh, Sweetie, they
are tap shoes. You aren't taking tap."
"Buy me?" she repeats.
"Well, let's try them on."
She sits on the
floor and removes her bright pink rain boots,
on the sides, and easily slides the new shoes on.
perfect fit. When she stands up she hears
"click." She takes a
dawns, as she makes the connection between
the shoes and
her moving feet. Click, click, click.
"Buy me?" with a hopeful look in her eyes.
Again, "Buy me, peas?"
"Okay Sweetie, take them off and put them in the
We look around some more
and get a few t-shirts, pants, books
and games and a naked
stuff a bag day -- might as well get my money's
think to myself.
The sun has come
back out as we emerge from our little side trip
continue on our way. As we near the car, Amara reaches
the bag. As she climbs into the back seat, I give
her the bag
wondering what treasure she is looking
for. The shoes, of course.
She is my daughter after
It's not a question, so I took the tag off
and helped her with
the buckle. Our next stop was the
grocery store and these shoes were
made to make noise,
especially on my little girl's feet. This could
click -- people turn to look as we enter the store.
Click, click, click. I can feel the
disapproving stares of the
proper people. People who
would never allow their daughter to wear
tap shoes to the
grocery store. I hold my head up with pride.
click, click, click is music to my ears.
dear. Is your daughter in tap this year?"
why on earth would you allow her to wear tap shoes,
of all places? They make such a
"Yes, isn't it
dear, this is not the place to wear those shoes."
"Oh, I think this is the perfect place to
wear them. You see
she asked for them."
"Just because she asked for them, doesn't
mean you have to get
them for her."
understand," I said. "When she was a baby, we
told she would never walk or talk. It has taken
a lot of hard work
and patience but she ASKED for the shoes
and the click, click, click
says that she CAN
My daughter, the
one who never stays still, or quiet, will
grade twelve next year. It has not always been
but it has all been
taught me that it doesn't matter what others think.
They don't walk in your
And just like
the ladies in the purple hats, sometimes you
simply have to
wear tap shoes to the grocery store -- if for nothing
just for the sheer joy of hearing the click, click,