A Hard Day’s Night Barefoot


Again, before I even start, I want to state that this is a barefoot obsessive entry… if that’s just not your thing… move along… nothing to see here.

Ahh… but if it is…

Barefoot Justine's feet... pretty pink polish.

Barefoot Justine’s feet… pretty pink polish.

Yes, what a night, one of THEE grand nights. Downtown Gainesville, A Hard Day’s Night at the Wooly… in 16mm no less! Fab! I was going to go, by myself if I had to, but Sheanah agreed to go with. Anyhow, one would think I’d be writing about the movie, grand as it was, but something else stole the show for me: the delicious sensation of being barefoot… in the words of Kate Bush, “Mmmmm yesss.”

I know, I’m barefoot all the time, but for some reason (actually one none too surprising to anyone who really knows me <>) I was feeling especially… say… happy about being me. And usually, not too far around the corner from that is my feeling particularly happy about being barefoot. It came over me all at once, the sensation I live for but find more and more elusive as time goes on, and the sensation was that of truly FEELING what it meant to be barefoot: the sensuality, the wildness, a pinch of danger and the sweet sweet feeling of soft bareness with a faint glow of vulnerability all around the edges. It was a delicious as Mexican chocolate ice cream.

As I waited for her meeting to be over I closed my eyes and sat in appreciation of the sweet simple pleasure of being barefoot, I just let it have me, and for the first time, perhaps ever, I was really happy I had a nice long little wait on my hands–my fault, as always I was too early. The best part was, it didn’t slip between my fingers like water, and when I let it slip, I was capable of getting it back. It seems the more I live barefoot, the harder it becomes to find that feeling of freshness and totally-on sensuality, but tonight I had hold and wasn’t letting go of the reigns.

Soon my wait was over, and she was ready to go to the movie. Being out was in and of itself a grand pleasure, I’ve become a bit of a shut-in of late, so I managed to take it all in as we walked: a friend, the night walk itself, being barefoot, the beautiful Florida night in downtown Gainesville… and we were walking on to see The Beatles A Hard Day’s Night in 16mm. Oh, how could this NOT be a great evening? Well, I could have found a way to let that happen, but I chose instead to revel and wallow in the vibe, the buzz, the Beatles, and my bare feet.

Of course once the opening of the first chord triumphantly rings out in that film and song… I’m away, swept up out of my seat and into the full graphic black and white glory of this masterpiece. God is that movie funny, and I can say without hesitation that A Hard Day’s Night is the most energetic film ever made… and yet it knows enough to slow down and let us catch our breaths. It is not a surprise that a Beatles’ movie would have great timing and pacing.

For some reason (wink) the movie seemed longer than ever… though that taffy-pulled sense of time did nothing more than encourage me to sink ever deeper into the lovely world of frenetic Beatlemania.

Fortunately, the night did not end there, no we had ice cream in our plans. I tell you, I don’t know if I could have faced the end of A Hard Day’s Night without the promise of something sweet. So we walked down through town, blocks and blocks on a perfect night, past college bar after college bar, all the while my bare feet taking in every nook and crannie of the concrete, my pores soaking in every shimmering moment of the night.

OK, so it’s a tad florid… yet these words are still not shining with the same truths I enjoyed in those moments. I was a tad worried about glass, past all those bars, but I stepped on glass just yesterday, and all it did was stick to my pad… I have thick soles. Not impervious by any means, but thick.

Along the way I felt a solidarity and comfort at the sight of another barefoot girl in the streets around the bars, and she had no shoes with her, her feet healthy and happily bare. We didn’t speak. I’m not sure were even steeping in the same maya.

The perfect flow of simple hedonism kept coming as Karma Kream had my very favorite flavor… Mexican chocolate (it’s got cinnamon in it!), and lo and behold, my barefoot sister was there as well. We took our ice cream and walked the long walk back, none of it any less at any moment, and Sheanah and I talked about how good it was to be out, and both of us with our chocolate ice cream to keep us centered on how good things were right then and right there. Now I could just have well have written about hanging out with such a cool woman… but right now I’m just really feeling the vibe of being barefoot with tremendous joy, and so glad I was out with someone so wonderful as I was enjoying such bliss.

So I came home and checked my soles, a little whitish around the heels from all the sidewalks, but surprisingly clean. My soles seem to repel dirt. Oh well, you can’t have everything, but, then again, who needs everything anyhow?

3 responses »

  1. I am wondering… when you go grocery shopping or eat at a restaurant, do they give you a bad time about not wearing shoes? How do you handle this?

    • Jonathan, I am a fighter. I was kicked out of Walmart a few days ago for being barefoot. I fought it, as I know it is not a healthcode violation and Walmart does not have a policy, so I called corporate and complained. The woman on the other end researched it and agreed that there was not policy, so they had no grounds with which to kick me out. The manager called me from the store and we settled it. Now when someone tries to kick me out at that Walmart all I have to do is ask for that manager… I solve my problems like that when I can. Additionally, as I do know there are no healthcode rules against bare feet, I go to restaurants that honor this and do not wish to limit my personal liberties. I think anyone should be weary of places that kick you out based on erroneous healthcode laws… why eat in a place that is ignorant of healthcodes? Additionally, when I can I write and post blog entries attacking places that kick me out… and it is surprising how widely read those blogs can be. I guess how I do it is… I fight! I fight and I find places that know the laws, their policies, and know that I have a right to choose. I make friends with local restaurateurs and employees, I smile, and for the most part, people welcome me. It’s kind of a long rambling reply, but what they hey…

      • In contrast, I have never been kicked out of a Walmart, and I have gone barefoot in four of them. In two of them, I have even asked store staff where to find something. I don’t always have a shopping cart with me, so then my bare feet are not at all hidden from view.

        I also have “flexible flat feet”–meaning that the arch collapses to almost completely flat when taking a step (even when there’s an arch when standing, or when the feet are totally relaxed)–so almost the entire sole of the foot gets dirty but it still doesn’t look like wearing shoes when the toes are completely bare on top.

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