Shiny Leather Shoes
Stories from the Allen Edmonds Man
In my shoes: Volume 1 - Story 2
I was already in my seat when an elderly woman named Elsie boarded the plane and sat down next to me. She looked very tired, as though she had had a difficult day. After settling in, Elsie commented on how shiny my Allen Edmonds shoes were. Soon, we were deep in conversation and Elsie explained her day's hardships. She had been visiting one of her daughters in Houston, and due to an airport attendant wheeling her to the wrong gate, she had missed her flight home to Winnipeg. She had been stranded in a wheelchair at the airport the entire day, and now feared she would miss her rerouted connecting flight out of Chicago due to weather delays.
Upon landing, I offered to wheel Elsie to her connecting flight's gate, but unfortunately we arrived just minutes after the plane had departed. The airline would not provide Elsie with a hotel, so I invited Elsie to have dinner with my wife and me at our home. Elsie had never seen the city of Chicago or been in a high-rise before, so it was a memorable experience for her. After dinner, I put Elsie up in a nearby hotel and arranged for a town car to pick her up and take her to the airport the next day. Elsie arrived home safe and sound, without another hitch.
As a thank you gesture, Elsie made sure the news found out about the story, and to my slight embarrassment, it became the feel good pre-Christmas story throughout the nation. The news made a big deal of my efforts and asked Elsie why she trusted me. She said it was because I had shiny leather shoes on, and that her father taught her to trust men who take care of their shoes.
Elsie and I remain good friends. Polished shoes and a little kindness go a long way in today's world.