Road trip: Shoes

(Sorry I’ve not been able to keep you current on the road trip for the last week. I’ve been thinking about you, but losing access to my computer has really made it hard to post!)

shoe tree

Speaking of leaving your mark, this was just cool.

I’d been driving for hours across Highway 50 in Nevada, billed as the loneliest road in the country for good reason. I mean, there is nothing out there! In fact the landscape was so desolate I ‘d been taking pictures for you all morning to illustrate what the world must have looked like before there was any advertising (or fences, or driveways, or houses, or road signs, or animals, or other cars …)

All of a sudden I saw a huge tree growing out of a dry wash. It could have been the only tree in the county, as far as I knew. As I drove closer I noticed there seemed to be something hanging from the tree. Lots of things, suspended from the tree in large clusters like huge wisteria blossoms. I was nearly on top of the tree when I realized that these giant blossoms were composed of … shoes! Hundreds of them. Sneakers, boots, sandals – shoes of all sizes and varieties. Some were quite weathered; clearly they had been collecting there for many years. Some were marked with initials or other messages, perhaps marking special events. Many had fallen to the base of the tree in a deep pile like so much forest mulch.

What a odd thing to do with your only tree! It would have been funny anywhere, but in a landscape where I’d seen little but sand and sagebrush for several hours it was hilariously bizarre; radically out of context. It sure did get my attention!

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