I’ve always enjoyed getting new shoes. Sometimes, though, I had to wear hand me downs. But, I remember the joy of walking around in my older brother’s shoes. There was so much room in the toe area.I didn’t realize that shoes came in specific sizes until I was older. I remember getting my first pair of overshoes. They were red, vinyl boots and I was in kindergarten. I remember sitting on the floor (where else does a five year old sit?) holding my new boots, almost intoxicated by the smell of new vinyl.Of course I’ve been let down a bit since. My feet seemed to grow too big. The only shoes that I remember between my vinyl boots and my high school years were a pair of suede slip-on Hush Puppies. I loved those shoes. I loved them so much I wore them while I changed oil on the Rambler station wagon. Oops. All that oil soaked right into the suede.So, there I was, my best pair of shoes with oil stains on them. I went out to buy new shoes. You couldn’t buy shoes anywhere in those days. At least, not shoes that would fit me. In those days, a size 12 was something you had to go to a big shoe store to find.Recently I bought another pair of Hush Puppies. It seems they are back in style. I’ve tried to wear all the in-style sports shoes. But, you know what? They have their sizes all messed up.My Hush Puppies that fit are size 12 E and in order to find a pair of Nike walking shoes, the shoe expert (a teenager with a striped shirt on) told me I needed a pair of 13 1/2 wides. I asked them if he had those in stock. “No,” he said. “They don’t make that size.”I settled for a pair of 14’s because the 13’s were too small. Just to make sure my feet hadn’t grown I used the foot measuring thing myself. There I was, heel to toe. Size 12 E.You know, I think those oriental shoes are in metric sizes. Thank goodness for Hush Puppies!