Off The Grid

Living off the Grid on a west coast island

It’s about time

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 E made a habit of going to every big name music concert, back in the day when rock was at its best. He has seen the Rolling Stones, Led Zepellen and the  J. Giles band. He has seen the Who, countless times. He remembers they had to cut the Zepellen concert in 1973 short because they announced they were taking Robert Plant to the hospital. He was unaware of the huge riot which went on outside of the Stones concert in 1972 and remembers he paid $6.00 for the ticket.  He would see a concert one night in Vancouver and then drive to Victoria or Seattle for the next nights show. He was the guy, up at the front by the stage like a maniac. Our first concert together was The Police at the old Colosseum in Vancouver. Just as I got comfortable for the two hours in my nice cozy seat at the far end of the arena, the lights dimmed and the music started. E jumped up and yelled “Let’s go”. I looked at him like he was mad..”to the stage, the band is coming on”..

At the time I was five foot three inches.  The doctor tells me I have since left three of those inches back in the nineties. Women my height don’t stand in front of stages at concerts. On this island, we get tagged for jobs like climbing into water tanks or under houses to find wires. There are very few advantages to being short with tiny feet. 

Yesterday, five of us set off to the neighbouring island for groceries and a bit of shopping. My favorite store there carries, hand knit sweaters, kitchen do dads, and every possible Merrill shoe you could imagine.. What a great store!!!  After I paid for my few stocking stuffers I looked for my driver for the day, Kathy. I found her on the floor of the kids shoe area trying on shoes. 

I wear children’s socks and boys gum boots but I stopped trying for deals on shoes when I accepted that no matter how cheap they were, E was not going to appear in public with me in Pink runners adorned with flashing lights and the face of Barbie. But Kathy drew me over and said…. “But look they have children’s Merrills”. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Merrill shoes on this island, for me they are heaven sent. With the titanium plates in my wrists I can’t tie or untie shoes very well. Slip on shoes for the constant indoor and outdooring we do are mandatory. The rubber soles are great for the boat and the support helps for the constant treading on uneven surfaces…(rocky paths etc.) But I have worn out the two pair I brought with me and I can’t afford the current price 130.00 per pair. I am wearing cheap knock offs that I got from Marks Work Wharehouse and my feet are taking the toll with bruised heals and stiff joints.

But, yesterday my genius, short, driving friend with the tiny feet encouraged me to try the children’s Merrills that were on sale. Children’s size 5.5 is the equivalent to a woman’s 6 apparently. Who knew???  As I was paying for my new children’s Merrills at half the price of the adult pair the sales clerk says ” We would like to give you another 30% off because they are the last pair”..  $47.00 for Merrill shoes!!!!!  I was so happy….  Yeah Kathy my new best friend!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

I am a woman of simple needs but one of them is comfortable shoes. Yesterday, was the first time I benefited from being short with tiny feet… It 

was about time

Author: Off Grid Islanders

We are a retired couple living on an off grid island on the West Coast

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