Walking a mile in another person’s shoes is a valuable exercise, allowing us to see life from someone else’s perspective. But the words that make up this phrase show us a lot too. The assumption is that people everywhere wear shoes, something that is just not true in much of the world. In many places, people wear no shoes at all, or the shoes they wear are made from materials that would be discarded in Europe or in the US. Like the ‘ten thousand-milers’, sandals worn across East Africa, by the Maasai and other tribes. These practical, long-lasting sandals are made from the tread of car tires (that’s tyres, for those in the UK).
Shoes or no shoes, “walking a mile in another person’s footsteps” is a valuable lesson, and might result in more understanding and appreciation for other cultures, something that countries across the world could benefit from.
Until next time…