Cold feet

Autumn

The weather’s turning colder here in England as I prepare for my first winter in 20 years. Curiously, the thing I’m finding the hardest to adapt to is wearing socks and shoes.

I don’t know exactly where it’s stipulated in English law, but I’m told you can get arrested here for driving with no shoes on. That seems crazy to me because surely you can feel the pedals more easily and respond more quickly if you’re driving with bare feet.

The benefits of bare feet

I always drove barefoot when I lived in Bali, and being an etherically based culture, that’s how most Balinese people drive too, even on motorbikes. You can often see a whole barefoot family of five on a motorbike, or a car driver waiting at some traffic lights (or even driving along a main road) with one bare foot up on the dashboard, wiggling his toes. Like many third world cultures, the Balinese remove their shoes before entering their home and often walk barefoot outdoors too. Shoes are required for visiting government offices, working in tourism and a few other situations, but in Bali’s tropical climate, they are certainly not required for warmth.

I’ve noticed that people who walk barefoot much of the time have feet that are generally broader and flatter than feet that have been encased in shoes from an early age. Their feet are also more expressive. If you watch them in conversation, their feet can be as alive as their hands, and after living like this for so many years, my feet became the same. Those of you who’ve been to seminars or workshops I’ve taught will know that I generally teach barefoot. I feel much more etherically vital that way and I know I teach a much better class as a result.

Adapting to life in the UK

As the weather here in England has become colder and I’ve had to progress to wearing socks, then shoes, and now sometimes fur-lined boots when I go out, it’s quite a lifestyle change for me. I’m really enjoying the change in season and the beautiful autumnal colours, but as I sit here typing barefoot I have to admit my feet are chilly. And I’m having to learn how to feel the pedals of my car through socks and boots because my feet would be too cold to even feel them without.

So the challenge for me is not just about surviving my first English winter in years with my tropically thinned blood, but more importantly, finding ways to preserve my etheric aliveness in the process. I’ll tell you how important this is to me — a thermal underwear catalogue arrived in the mail this morning and I got excited!

Copyright © Karen Kingston, 2010


About Karen Kingston

Karen Kingston is a leading expert in clutter clearing, space clearing, feng shui and healthy homes. Her two international bestselling books have combined sales of over three million copies in 26 languages and have established themselves as "must read" classics in their fields. Her best-known title, Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui, is now in its fourth edition. She is best known for her perspective-changing insights and practical solutions that enable more conscious navigation of 21st-century living.
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2 Responses to Cold feet

  1. Kim Blackburn says:

    Karen, I know your post is about a year old, but having been barefoot all of my adult life I felt a connection to you and your situation. Living in Michigan, United States we have a lot of snow and cold weather so I am always looking for something to get me through with the most natural feel. Check these shoes out, there are many styles to choose from and I am a fan. http://www.vibramfivefingers.com

  2. Jo Crescent says:

    Karen, I’ve been barefoot all summer here in northern California & am just not able to continue as the weather turns colder & wetter, so I feel your situation!

    2 things: don’t take for granted the urban legend about barefoot driving; check it out. We have the same legend in the US & it is _not_ true

    the other thing? Sockwa … check out http://www.sockwa.com/

    I haven’t got my pair yet, but this week will. Feels like barefoot, the reviews say, except warmer. Could be just the thing for us tropical girls caught in cold weather (your weather is colder than mine & I wish you all the best as you endure it! Remember your Vit D)

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