I need boots. But I don’t have boots. So I just live with the uncomfortable, rocky feeling of sand and dirt in the bottom of my dirty, muddy, converse for two hours. I like to pretend I’ll make a sand castle with all the debris I’ve collected over the course of the evening, even though such a feat would be utterly impossible.

When I would go to the Hermann Park as a kid my mom would always tell me when it was time to go, “Empty your shoes before you get in the car!” And I would, because I hated the way the grimy little particles felt in-between my toes anyway.

Later, once the threat of sandy upholstery had been eliminated, we would always exclaim, “Wow! That’s enough sand to make a sand castle,” so that’s what I think of every time I dump my shoes out. Little ant-sized sand castles that sit outside my car door. Little sand castles that no one knows about other than me.

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