Questionable Decisions

The delivery man called me a few minutes after ten o’clock.

“I’m on my way to ye now!” He said, his voice bubbling with confidence. “How do I find ye?”

I spun slowly on one foot, chewing my lip as I considered my geographical ignorance.

“It’s just…. through the village?” I said, my voice lilting upward at the end because I sincerely hadn’t a clue.

Frantically I attempted to chart the course in my mind, but it was just a hodgepodge of picture-book images in there; the post office, the church, the water pump. Was the church before or after the post office? Where was the water pump in relation to either of those? I stared blindly out the window at the rain as the delivery driver rattled down the country roads towards me.

“Alright,” he yelled over the sound of the rain. “I’ll stay on the phone. Now, I’m just at a turn that has me facin’ the post office-”

“Oh!” I shouted, like a contestant on a quiz show. If I’d had a buzzer I would have slammed my hand down. I knew this one! “Turn left there!”

I heard the click-click-click of the indicator snap on.

“Okay and now I’m passin’ a school-”

An image flashed in my brain and I cut in again.

“Yep! Just… if you just keep going past the school and past all the houses…”

“I’m passin’… another school it looks like-”

“Yep, keep going, past that…”

“An’ now I’m passin’ a house with a yella door-”

“Yep, yep keep going, you’ll reach a long stretch of nothing and then there’s a gate on the right that’s sort of at the end of the hedgerow…”

“Is it a long driveway? Have ye a blue door?”

“Yes!”

“Ah I’m here now so.”

“Great! Thanks! If you drive around to the back…”

“Okay will do.”

I raced to the back porch and pulled open the door as the white delivery van swung round the corner. I lifted one foot to step outside and saw that the path down the garden was almost flooded. I glanced mournfully down at my unicorn slippers, then up at the driver, hunched over, dragging a box out of the back of the van. Not wanting to get my unicorns wet, but also not wanting the driver to get soaked to the skin waiting for me to find a pair of shoes, I kicked off the slippers and hopped down the flagstones on my tiptoes.

When I reached the man, he was watching me warily.

“Did ye just-” He paused as he handed me the scanner. “Did I just see ye kick yer shoes off to come outside? In the rain? Where it’s wet?”

I made a mangled stab at signing my name with the tip of my finger, then handed him back the device. There was a moment of silence as we both looked down at my feet, now shiny from the rain.

“Yes,” I said, since there didn’t seem any point in denying it.

“Alright so!”

He smiled at me with a slight frown. It was a gentle smile, a kindly-but-concerned smile. The sort of amiable, uncertain smile you give people when you’re not quite sure they’re right in the head. I briefly wondered if there was anything I could say to defend my questionable decision.

Probably not.

He looked down at my feet again, raised his eyebrows in an expression that seemed to say, ‘Well I’ve seen it all now!’, then got back in his van and backed out of the driveway as I skipped back over the flagstones to my warm fluffy unicorn slippers.

 

40 comments
  1. I feel this was a sensible decision. After all your feet are immediately washable and dryable, slippers less so! Personally I’d save my sheep slippers but I was always told off for wandering around the yard in my socks when I was younger so I may have issues…!

    1. RIGHT? I’m glad we agree.

  2. V well written!

    1. Thanks Sean!

  3. The man is a philistine. Unicorn slippers are sacrosanct, and to be protected at all cost. No wonder he delivers other peoples’ goods for a living. In the rain.

    Nothing questionable about your decision at all.

    1. You understand.

      And it doesn’t matter that I have three different pairs. That part is irrelevant.

      1. It certainly is. It certainly is.

  4. I have a pair of pink slippers with little piggy heads on – no way would I get those piggies wet. You made the right decision πŸ™‚

    1. Okay those sound adorable! Where did you get them??

      1. I got them from my local Asda store but it’s a long while since. I’ve had slippers as presents for the last two or three Christmases so I’ve been wearing those before resorting to wearing the piggies – they look so darned cute I didn’t want to spoil them! πŸ™‚

        1. I have a pair of slippers (also unicorns) that I bought over two years ago and still haven’t worn because I don’t want them to get dirty. But if I never wear them, I won’t get maximum joy out of them! What to do, what to do….

  5. Barefoot in the rain sound like a wonderful way to be. Personally I love the rain and being out in it! πŸ™‚

    1. Me too as long as I know I have a warm spot next to a heating source waiting for me when I choose to run back inside!

      1. Yes for sure, that sounds very lovely!

  6. Your story made me smile.

    1. Haha I’m glad! πŸ™‚

  7. SAVE THE UNICORN SLIPPERS! Whats a little water, possible chillblains or frostbite, always save the unicorns πŸ™‚

    1. I mean they’re practically an endangered species! Luckily I managed to escape the curse of chilblains…!

      1. πŸ˜‚

  8. Ah, Ireland…. I’ve been there and even though this story isn’t exactly saying this, I discovered that directions given by Irish people are generally, um inaccurate, and hard to follow! I got lead astray a couple of times, but had a bunch of fun in the process. Bless the Irish!

    1. I have been known in the past to give directions to the wrong place. In my defense, I panicked and the words just came out having bypassed my brain, and then I felt guilty for DAYS, but still. Somewhere a woman drove off in search of a rugby club that didn’t exist.

      Some say she is still driving to this day…

  9. I like that even he knows fluffy (and most likely colorful) unicorn slippers are still considered shoes… I agree with the masses though, the outside world with cold and most likely acidic rain is no place for unicorns, slipper or otherwise.

    1. God I hope he couldn’t see the unicorn slippers from the end of the drive…. I’m so glad you agree! πŸ™‚

  10. I loathe giving directions. I want to say ” listen, you stand a much better chance of finding the place on your own, I can only make the situation worse” lol

    1. You at least are honest, which is better than what I do which is panic and just give random (wrong) directions, or else stammer “Sorry I’m not from around here” even though I’m standing on the street where I spent the first 20 years of my life.

      Ahhhhh….. yes, I am the worst.

      1. hahaha!!!!

  11. As usual – love your post!

    1. Thank you!

  12. How wonderful – love the directions. What’s more, he FOUND you!!! AS for the slippers, I would done the same πŸ™‚ Unicorns are an endangered species. If they caught a cold, who knows what would happen ?!

    1. I know! I have to be honest and say I was surprised!

      1. πŸ™‚

  13. My favorite sort of writing. Just a quick sketch.

    1. Haha thanks Jeff!

  14. I think it was very kind and considerate of you to disregard your own comfort for the sake of a stranger. Good for you.

    1. Haha thanks Paul!!

  15. Hey, desperate times! You could not just run your unicorns into the rain – way too precious! I also would love to see said slippers :). You are a lovely gal for running out to him! Ironically, I was barefoot in the cold rain at like 2am – chasing down pups… who were barking at a questionable man at the end of our drive way. There was no time for shoes, I just darted out. My feet landed in 2 large puddles and felt like they were going to freeze to the sidewalk! Hahaha, Ah. Questionable decisions indeed my friend! <3

    1. RIGHT? 2am though… Why was there a questionable man at the end of your driveway?!

  16. we should always carry something away from walking in the rain

    [youtube=https://youtu.be/DUU2dTib7mI&w=320&h=240&rel=0]

    1. Truly true!

  17. I love that you had to give the delivery man directions to your house. That is literally never a thing I’ve had to do. Isn’t it sort of their job to know where to go? Like cab drivers?
    You clearly made the right decision here. THEY’RE UNICORN SLIPPERS FOR GOD’S SAKE.

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