30 May, 2011

Ode to my Feet

I am currently very happy with my feet. I realize that almost everyone has them, and usually they are associated with dirt, smells and sweat. We often try to adorn them with bright, painted toe-nails or perhaps a toe ring, I've even seen some very creative tattoos. 
However, though they carry us about in our day-to-day activities they seldom receive the praise which they deserve. Since coming to Thailand I have begun to pay more attention to my feet. 
In this country, feet are considered the dirtiest and most offensive part of the body; shoes are removed before entering any house or temple, feet are to be kept clean out of courtesy to others, and it is rude to point ones feet at another person, and even more offensive if done to a Buddha statue.

Because of the need for constant vigilance concerning the state and direction of my feet, I have began to pay closer attention to them and I feel as though I have been ignoring them all my life. The other day I was reminded not to take them for granted.

It was a day when I put my poor and uncomplaining feet through a great deal of walking - first from my apartment to Kad Suun Keew mall and back - about an hour walk each way - and then all around the Sunday night Walking Street for a few hours. If this was not enough, I then took the long trek home from Tapae Gate (another hour's walk)! It was only after showering and laying myself down in exhaustion, that I turned my attention to the appendages at the end of my legs. I stared at them in wonder; sore and swollen they had carried my towering body across the city as I trudged back and forth. What strength and perseverance! With a new appreciation I lay on my bed and massaged those tired and faithful friends. 

Thank God for my feet!

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