Once upon a time I was walking down the streets of Yerevan when my sandal broke. The sole had become partially unstuck – which made for some very awkward walking. But as I’m not Cinderella hence no magic spell was about to turn me into a pumpkin when the clock struck midnight the whole idea of running barefoot back “home” didn’t really appeal to me. Thus I shuffled along, slowly making my way back to the hostel where I had a pair of trainers waiting for me.
A few minutes later one of my friends remembered he had seen a cobbler nearby the previous day so instead of heading to the hostel we went in search of the cobbler. His “nearby” and my nearby weren’t the same – particularly as walking with a falling-apart-sandal was proving more annoying by the minute. Then, there he was. I pointed at my shoe, he pointed towards his chair. I sat, took of my sandal and handed it to him. He examined it, carefully cleaned it, glued it back together and handed it back. I used the universal sign for “how much do I owe you?” He replied with a smile and a universal sign for “nothing, it was my pleasure”.
P.S. With my shoe fixed, walking back to the hostel took less than 5 minutes. So yes, my friend had been right when he said nearby.
P.P.S. don’t know why I didn’t want to take my shoes off though, I’ve walked barefoot in NYC so why not Yerevan?