“The Lost Shoes” — a story by Mallika Sheshadri

One City One Story 2016 Writing Contest: “A Vivid Memory”

2nd place

Category 1: Grades 3-5


“The Lost Shoes”

by Mallika Sheshadri

Grade 3

Willard Elementary School

 

 

Four years ago when I was still in preschool, I had a friend named Saba, who still is my friend. We were five years old and we went to Hastings Ranch Nursery School, a play-based preschool. We were best friends and were in our senior year of preschool. Our favorite game in the school play yard was Candy Land where we had to take one of two paths: the long, safe path or the shorter, dangerous route. We would always take the short and dangerous route and we made my sister, Tara, go the other way because she was too little to take the dangerous route. That was meant for only big kids like us.

Now, I am going to tell you a silly but true story about those good old days.

One sunny day around nine o’clock in the morning…

“Let’s find some treasure,” I said to Saba.

“Okay,” replied Saba.

We started digging in the sandbox. After a while, it was very obvious that we would not find anything in our preschool yard because it was just an ocean of sand. But I was a very persistent little kid and I was not going to give up so easily.

So I said to Saba, “Saba, let’s bury our shoes in the sandbox and then find them later like a treasure.”

“Okay,” replied Saba.

So we got to work. We go the big plastic shovels and we each dug a hole. Soon, we each had dug about a one and a half foot deep hole in the sand. Then we each took off one of our shoes. We put our shoes in the holes and using the shovels again, we covered the holes to make them look like it was just a patch of sand. We put an X on top of our holes.

“There,” Saba said. “We’re done.”

“Yup,” I replied. “Let’s go play on the playground. Then we can forget where we put them. Then we can find our shoes later.”

So we played on the playground and the day went by. We played Candy Land with Tara and ate a snack in the classroom. About an hour before the end of the day when everyone was back on the playground, we started to search for our shoes.

We looked for our X marks the spots, but they had faded over the day, so we searched for the shoes. It was like a treasure hunt in a big ocean of sand, and no clues of where it could be. We searched everywhere, and I mean everywhere that our shoes could be, but we had no luck.

We kept searching for about forty-five minutes, but nothing was found. About fifteen minutes before the end of school, the teachers called us in for something called “Share Box” and the goodbye song we sang at the end of every day. Share Box was where each day one student took the box home and brought it back the next day with something in it. At the end of the day, that child will go to the front of the class and the class had to try to guess what was inside of it.

After that my nanny Becky came to pick up me and my sister Tara. I told Becky the whole story.

“Can we stay and search for a little bit and look for my shoe?” I asked her.

“Okay,” she said.

Meanwhile, Saba had convinced her mom to let her stay while to look for her shoes. Finally, after searching for about forty-five minutes, we gave up. So we left and Saba and I had to hop back to our cars instead of walking or we would hurt our feet. The next day, we looked for our shoes for forty-five minutes again. We looked for our shoes for forty-five minutes for the next two weeks.

For two weeks, we wore different shoes that weren’t very comfortable for school such as boots and ballet slippers. But two weeks later, a teacher and a little boy came over to us.

“I found your shoe, Mallika,” the teacher said.

“I found your shoe, Saba,” the little boy said.

“Really?” Saba and I gasped.

“Yes,” the teacher said.

“Here,” the boy said as he thrust the shoe into Saba’s hand.

The teacher gave me my shoe.

“Thank you,” Saba and I said.

We continued to wear the “not the best school shoes” for the rest of the day. That night, I washed my shoe and the next day and the rest of my preschool days, I wore that pair of shoes without losing them ever again.


 

View:  One City One Story Contest 2016 Winners

Jane Gov

Jane is a Youth Services Librarian at Pasadena Central Library. She purchases YA books for the library system and maintains the teen booklist, online resources, and webpages. She oversees Teen & YA programs including Summer Reading, Advisory Board, Zine, book reviewers, Teen Mental Health Initiative, and volunteers. She also coordinates the library's Innovation Lab, STEAM Kits project, and Young Readers League. She also conducts a few kids events and storytimes. Jane is a contributor to VOYA Magazine and a YALSA Board member.  A majority of her free time is spent with her two corgis Tyrion and Gimli. She tweets as @missjanegov.

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