Scandinavia and the World

Comments #9827492:


Shoes on shoes off 27 1, 2:04am

I think it's regional and cultural in the United States. I grew up in the Pacific Northwest, spending much of my time in my Grandmother's house. People came and went in her house constantly, and in general nobody took off their shoes to come inside. That said, my Grandfather who owned a garage and service station, and later worked in heavy equipment parts, always took off his work boots as soon as he came in the house. Everybody, including my Grandfather, came in through the kitchen door. Not the front door. So he'd come in, take off his dirty work boots, and set them by the heat vent.

That said, my Grandmother and all the neighbors who worked in the garden would have "garden shoes" that were never worn indoors. They stayed in the garage with the garden tools.

On almost any given Sunday afternoon my Grandmother's house would fill up with family. Often between 12 and 20 people. Nobody took off their shoes, and if they all did it would probably fill up the whole of the kitchen. (I had a large extended family.) Christmas or Thanksgiving was worse, with even more people.

In other parts of the country it's common for kids to run around outside in the summer barefoot. Coming inside with bare feet that have been running around in the dirt seems to me to be worse than coming in wearing shoes. That said, where I lived there wasn't a lot of dirt to be running around in, and we didn't generally run around barefoot anyway. There was clover everywhere which attracted a lot of honeybees. If you ran around outside in the grass/clover barefoot you'd get stung a lot.