May 17, 2009

Pansy Feet :(

In celebration of the over 20C weather today, I decided to go for a walk completely barefoot. I had high hopes for this walk. I was not expecting the degree of pansy feet that I experienced...

I left my house with my spouse and two dogs with a pair of KSOs on my feet. It was warm and humid this morning, a rare combination for this area. We walked to the nearby soccer fields that have a large expanse of grass surrounding them.

Just before reaching the soccer fields, I decided to take my shoes off. I thought that the grass was growing enough by now to be soft and thought that it would still be cool from the night before.

The first thing I noticed was that my feet were bending more. I don't know how else to explain it but they would bend to the contours in the ground much more than when wearing VFFs. I liked it, I felt like my feet were getting an excellent workout.

The second thing I noticed was that the grass was not soft. It was prickly. I guess there was not enough new grass yet to cover up the rough dead grass underneath (spring starts late here in southern Alberta). I chose a path next to the soccer fields that is trampled down from soccer players running around the field, which ended up being softer than the grass further from the fields. It started feeling less prickly on my feet.

I enjoyed the feeling of stretching my feet, completely free of any shoe. I enjoyed the way my feet bent around the contours of the ground. I enjoyed the feeling of the warm new grass (when there was patches of mostly new and not old grass).

As we left the soccer fields, the new grass was more sparse and the old grass was prickly again so I decided to put my shoes back on. I was grateful when we reached a part of the park that had recently been aerated and had hard chunks of dirt which would have probably hurt my tender feet to step on without the protection of the KSOs.

When we got home, I laid on the couch for a little while and noticed something odd. The bottoms of my feet were burning. When I looked at them, they were covered in blotchy red spots. Apparently, I'm allergic to something that I stepped on whilst experiencing complete barefootedness :(

I'm not overly surprised as my skin often gets hives from laying on dry grass. I soaked my feet in cool water and washed them thoroughly with soap. They started to feel better.

So until the new grass grows a little thicker, I'll stick to my VFFs on grass. I really want to try going completely barefoot more. Next time, I'll try shoelessness on the sidewalk.