Saturday, January 28, 2017

It really can affect people

My neighbour told me yesterday that the lady above her wears shoes in her apartment and is constantly stomping around on the wood floor. My neighbour is very frustrated by all the racket. She said she had complained to the lady, but she had not changed her behaviour. I suggested that she buy this woman a pair of slippers as a polite nudge.

If you live in an apartment block, you really need to think about the people beneath you and stop wearing shoes inside.

Sunday, January 22, 2017

reddit: Hello, Europe! Do you wear shoes indoors?

reddit: Hello, Europe! Do you wear shoes indoors?

Another discussion on reddit about what the custom is in different European countries. The big cleavage comes out between Scandinavian and Central/ East Europeans who all remove their shoes and those from Mediterranean countries where shoes are kept on in homes. At one point somebody wonders if religion has something to do with the difference, but then it is quickly established that it cuts across Orthodox/ Catholic/ Protestant lines.

It's kind of interesting that the shoes off/ on border in the south-east is between Greece and her northern neighbours, Albania, Macedonia and Bulgaria. I don't quite get why this should be. Greece shares religion with Macedonians, Bulgarians and some Albanians and all of them were under Ottoman rule. Climate might be a difference, but winters in Greece can't be that much milder than those in Albania or Bulgaria. Is it down to the fact that Greece was not under Communism?

The original poster is from Bugaria. He says that removing shoes in his country is not down to tradition, but just the practicality of keeping out dirt. I've heard some people in Bulgaria would like to move away from removing shoes because it's uncool, meaning un-western, but no doubt practicality will prevent that. Removing shoes may be uncool, but that doesn't make the streets any cleaner.

Sunday, January 08, 2017

Reader's Digest: 7 Reasons to Take Off Your Shoes the Minute You Walk in the House

Reader's Digest: 7 Reasons to Take Off Your Shoes the Minute You Walk in the House

by Stephanie Smith

Not everything carried in on your sneakers is invisible to the naked eye. Dust and dirt built up from your shoes can easily be carried into your living quarters. Even if it’s not toxic, carrying dust and debris in from the park or trail isn’t ideal. Remove your shoes to keep things clean and tidy, and think about investing in a doormat to catch anything you might track in before you undo your laces.

It is interesting that the author assumes the reader is living in a trailer park. Certainly those living in muddy trailer parks definitely should be keen to go shoe-free.

Wednesday, January 04, 2017

Christmas Present

My parents gave me a set of guest slippers as a Christmas present. It contains four different sizes of felt slippers made in Denmark.

While my parents obviously thought this was a good idea and I'm grateful for their thoughtfulness, I think most British people are likely to be finicky about wearing slippers that have been worn by others. This is especially so as these slippers cannot be washed.

Sunday, January 01, 2017

Nordic Habits Die Hard

My mother had a Finnish lady over as a guest this New Year. She insisted the woman should keep her boots on when she came in, but the lady insisted on taking them off. Trying to get a Finn to keep her shoes on in the house is not going to work.