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October 11, 2013 / Linda Hartong


I have a guest author today, Danica’s Shoes, two small suede “Dora Mary Janes”.


When I arrive in Carmel this time and let myself in the cottage, I hear a tapping noise. The shoes are on the dining table tapping their toes impatiently. It appears they have a story to tell me and this is the way they tell it.

“Danica brought us to Carmel. When it is time to go home, we hide under the bed and are left.

The women who clean the house find us , dust us off and put us on a shelf for FOREVER.

 This is boring, so one morning we decide to hop down. We put on our favorite socks, the ones with the bows on the back, and head to the kitchen.


We get our plate and find a muffin and a pluot to eat for breakfast. 


We put on one of our  Dora movies but can not get interested


 So we go out to the Garden.


And knock at the door of a tiny house but no one is home to play.


 We get our sand bucket and decide to go to the beach.


The street seems too busy so we take the small paths we find as we go along.

she took the side path

Some are mossy.

One has a Toad House, thank goodness he was not home! We hate toads.

she peeked inside a toad house

Other paths have flowers

down the garden path

Or interesting stones. 

Danica's shoes at the Jordan House

This one has pretty petals on it and we can hear the ocean.

Garden Setting

It is a long walk but we finally arrive at the beach stairs.


We pass a dog just finishing his walk.

walk the dog

This is so much better than the shelf. People notice us and ask what we are doing and seem to understand we are just here to have a good time.


We forgot how hard it is to walk in the sand but on we go .


There it is! The Beach!


We go down to stick our toes in the foaming surf and are almost swept away. The water feels fresh and cold.


It is time to go home but the stairs are steep. We remember that the last time we were here Danica’s daddy carried us up.


At the top of the stairs we rest a bit and admire the view.



We see a lost yellow shovel and almost take it with us until we remember Danica’s favorite color is pink.


We visit with some “Hello Kitty” flip-flops


Sit on a bench.


And look at the pretty shells on the paths.

beach memorial

On the way home we cut through some back yards . One has this spider!!!

Danica's shoes at the Edgemere

And one has lots of toys. 

Danicas shoes and the purple shovel_edited-1

We are really getting tired so we stop at a blue bench and swing our feet for a while.

sat on the blue bench

We cut through some hidden courtyards. 

Mon Ami

They all seem to have dog dishes

danica shoes and the red dish

It was the fanciest dog dish she had ever seen


And we begin to miss our dog at home. She is big and lets us play on her.

her paws

A dog named Hudson spots us as we look in the door of his  shop and sees how worried we are. He invites us in and holds us gently in his big paws. We feel better after we talk with him. 

Hudson gives the shoes encouragement

So we press on. We are so tired when we finally reach our house 


That we collapse on the porch and take off our socks.


Boy! What a story we will have to tell Danica when she comes back to get us.”

Many thanks to the shoes for sharing their adventure with us. The story does have a happy ending. The shoes are reunited with Danica, but never forget their trip to Carmel.


Leave a Comment
  1. Maryanne@The Garden / Oct 11 2013 12:53 pm

    Absolutely Darling!

  2. Diane Schrader / Oct 11 2013 1:46 pm

    What a sweet little story,wait till I show my granddaughter…..thank you for that and all your wonderful Tales from Carmel love each and every one…..

    On Fri, Oct 11, 2013 at 5:15 AM, Once upon a time..Tales from Carmel by the

  3. Carol / Oct 11 2013 1:50 pm

    Haven’t been down in a couple of weeks, so this made me feel like I was there for a short while. And I know Hudson– sweet dog!

  4. VG&KL Lee / Oct 11 2013 2:03 pm

    Linda, This is special!  Danica will remember and cherish it forever.  Has she had a chance to see it yet? Best wishes, VGL


  5. Michael Smith / Oct 11 2013 2:23 pm

    Enjoyed your combined fable of shoes socks and dogs!!! The shoes triggered a thought I haven’t thought of in 40 years! My high top lace up leather baby shoes my mother had bronzed when I was one tear old. Later around six or seven I would get those shoes off her desk and gaze at them for awhile and ask her why she turned them into metal. She said I was the most beautiful baby she had ever seen and those were the shoes I took my first steps in. I have that day so vivid in my memory! I’ve never forgotten my mothers words and I knew right then how much she loved me! Thanks for bringing that memory back today! Michael

  6. Lorrie451 / Oct 11 2013 2:38 pm

    How sweet! You should publish this as a children’s book.I’m a few weeks short of 62 years old and it truly held my attention. I’m sure a child would like to read this charming story with the sweet photos. Lorrie

  7. Carole / Oct 11 2013 5:10 pm

    Sweet story… Would make a great children’s book. Beautiful photography.

  8. Jo-Ann Fantino Ruffolo / Oct 11 2013 5:46 pm

    I am still smiling. All the makings of a children’s book. jfr

  9. Chris J. / Oct 11 2013 9:43 pm

    What a delightfully sweet little tale. Really enjoyed it!

  10. Annie Westlake / Oct 12 2013 7:14 am

    Loved this charming adventure. Some among my collection of shoes are jealous and demand to be taken to Carmel. Also, I have a granddaughter named Danica, and I can’t wait to show her this.

    • ReneeJ / Oct 12 2013 12:44 pm

      What a delightful and charming tale! Very clever. You’ve captured the beauty of Carmel in just a short, sweet story. Love the worn toes on the shoes.

  11. Kirsten Honeyman / Oct 12 2013 3:32 pm

    What a wonderful story for Danica! Good job, Grandma.

  12. Heather / Oct 15 2013 12:50 am

    Oh, I love the story…I’ll have to leave a pair of Winston’s shoes next time we are there in hopes they will have such an amazing adventure!

  13. lynn momboisse / Oct 15 2013 6:37 pm

    Absolutely Darling!!!!! I love this story!!!!!

  14. downraspberrylane / Oct 19 2013 3:01 pm

    My husband and I just left Carmel on the date of this post. I wish I had seen you on the beach with those little shoes (I have a young granddaughter, so would have completely understood)! It was our first visit, and we stayed four days. Of course they went way too fast! Upon returning I was cruising the internet for photos of this lovely place, and happened upon your blog! I’m reading you from the beginning, and am delighted with all of your great photos and descriptions, especially of the cottages & courtyards. Ten years or so ago, I had a random thought come into my head that anyplace with such a lovely name as “Carmel-by-the-Sea” was a place I had to see, and so over the years I learned about it. Took me awhile to get there, but I am so glad I did, and hope to return soon. Thank you so much for writing this blog, I know it will brighten my dreary Minnesota winter! – Cheryl

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