Monday, June 17, 2013

Searching for my Sole in Saskatchewan

I slept soundly, the deep silence of Saskatchewan’s boreal forest broken only by the occasional drone of a mosquito approaching an exposed patch of skin. Everything changed on awakening.

The right shoe of my favourite pair of Rockports, which I had left, somewhat muddy, outside my recreational vehicle in a campground just outside Prince Albert National Park, was missing. The campground authorities were notified. A search was conducted. No luck. My remaining left shoe, size eleven, is now an orphan.
Everyone has a theory to explain one of greatest mysteries to ever hit Saskatchewan. Several animals are potential culprits: a bear, a fox, a lynx, a porcupine, perhaps even an errant pelican. Conspiracy theories, of course, are popular. A dangerous one-legged felon has recently escaped from a regional prison. UFOs are common here, I learned. But why would aliens want a size-11 right shoe? The Shoesquatch is a popular suspect and BC tourism officials quickly challenged Shoesquatch to a shoedown against Ogopogo. Others feel the incident is related to the shoes (with feet enclosed) washing up along the BC coast. I double locked the RV door next night — with the left shoe inside.

Worried that Saskatchewan will gain a reputation as the Bermuda Triangle of Shoes, tourism officials have posted a reward of $5,000 for the return of the missing shoe. For real! Search parties are being mounted even as we speak.

My wife, Allyson, is quite frugal and told me not to throw out the remaining left shoe. When questioned, she explained I might lose a foot or leg in the future and would then only need one shoe. My travel companions quickly pointed out that with my luck, I would probably lose the wrong foot. I look forward to calling Allyson: “I’ve got good news and bad news, dear.”

Should anyone be travelling to Saskatchewan soon, please contact me first. I’m bringing out a great line of shoe locks and shoes with inbuilt GPS-chips. Perhaps you might like the T-shirt?


  1. We have encountered customers who were very upset that we didn't forewarn them there was a fox thief. One in particular reported his grandson's missing expensive running shoe on a Saturday morning. This grandpa was fuming! He says we should have signs posted! Well, was his face red when on Sunday morning he came looking for HIS left shoe! Guess posting signs won't help! Linda @ Green Lake Lodge, SK.

  2. Dear Mr. Tammemagi,
    Your blog, which describes an incident of theft in Saskatchewan, has been brought to the attention of our association.

    First, it would be demeaning to all of us left-appendaged people if it was ever intended to be construed that a thief would only want a “right” shoe and that a “left” shoe is somehow less than worthy. This attitude only exemplifies the jingoistic, chauvinistic paternalism often displayed among the most misogynistic of right-appendaged people.

    Further, it is clear that the thief was right-appendaged and no left-appendaged person or persons were involved in the incident. That deduction should have been made clear in your blog and it is distressing that it was not.

    Generously assuming that you meant no harm, and recognizing that right-appendaged persons may not be astute enough to recognize when they are making potentially injurious statements, I am inclined to assist you in preventing future thefts of a similar nature by applying my superior deductive abilities (common among left-appendaged persons and this is regardless of race despite what Sheriff Arpiao Joe of Arizona might tell you).

    In your blog, you refer to “a line of shoe locks”. While you are potentially on the right track (no pun intended) you are obviously unaware of an existing device used for that same purpose with motor vehicles. It is called a “boot”. Clearly, in future, if you are in the wild, exchange your urban footwear for something more appropriate, i.e., boots. This will solve your problem because, by their very definition, they are devices intended to prevent theft and cannot be stolen.

    No, please don’t bother to thank me. We left-appendaged people feel it is our duty to help the less fortunate whenever we can.

    Yours respectfully,
    Roger Hefflefinger
    President – National Left Appendaged People Association (often confused with MENSA)