Fluffy and the Alligator Shoes by
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Fluffy and the Alligator Shoes

The house I grew up in had many lovely architectural features – a fireplace,  a lovely stairwell,  and a beautiful oval stained glass window that was in my mother’s closet.

I loved sitting in that closet.  It was a cozy and private place for a child to play,  and the light coming through the stained glass would bathe the closet floor in lovely colors as I sat between the windowed wall and the wall opposite that held a rod for my mother’s clothing and a shelf below for her shoes.

My mother wasn’t much of a clothes horse,  and I don’t remember that she had any really memorable outfits;  she used no make-up other than lipstick;  and the only jewelry she usually wore were earrings and a stand of pearls.   But I do remember she had a pair of strappy, alligator shoes that she prized and were probably rather costly.

My dog Fluffy was a puppy then.  (See Fluffy, or How I Got My Dog)    In fact Fluffy often followed me into my mother’s  closet,  and we were playing there once when I heard her call me to dinner.  I ran out leaving the dog behind.

Hours later I was upstairs in my third floor bedroom when I heard my mother cry out from my parents’  bedroom a floor below,   “Look what that dog has done!    She’s been in my closet and she’s destroyed my pair of alligator shoes!”

“Ah Jess”,  I heard my calm and ever-conciliatory father say,  “don’t be too hard on Fluffy,  and don’t exaggerate.   She only chewed up one shoe,  not the pair.”

I don’t think my mother was amused.

-Dana Susan Lehrman

Profile photo of Dana Susan Lehrman Dana Susan Lehrman
This retired librarian loves big city bustle and cozy country weekends, friends and family, good books and theatre, movies and jazz, travel, tennis, Yankee baseball, and writing about life as she sees it on her blog World Thru Brown Eyes!

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Tags: Dogs


  1. Betsy Pfau says:

    Oh Dana, that must have been tough on your mother, as you describe those were the only really nice pair, perhaps valuable, shoes she owned. My sympathies go out to her. My mother had a handbag from the same material that I used to admire very much. I also loved to play in my mother’s closet and admired all that was there, not that I understood much about it. I just knew that I enjoyed looking and seeing your Featured photo reminded me of that handbag with a crisp metal clasp.

    We didn’t get a puppy until I was much older and he was never allowed upstairs (honestly). He did chew the corner of our kitchen cabinets, but that was the limit to his damage.

    Do you remember how your mother dealt with this loss? Did she move on, or was she really upset?

    • Thanx Betsy! I don’t remember any repercussions, I’m sure my mother got over it.

      In fact altho she was not an animal lover, my mother not only tolerated all our pets, but she was the one – by default I guess – who gave the doggie her baths in a big laundry tub in the basement!

  2. Suzy says:

    Cute story, Dana. How unusual that there was a stained glass window in the closet! Do you think it had previously been a wall of the bedroom that got turned into a closet later?

    Now that you have written on this old prompt, I hope you will read the other stories on the prompt, if you haven’t already.

    • Thanx Suzy, it seems strange for a stained glass window to be “wasted” in a closet! But the configuration of the rooms, and fact that a linen closet backed up to that windowed closet, makes me think it was built that way.
      Looking up from the street, the window is centered in the front of the house and probably no one would guess it was in a closet!

      I did see you had a story on that prompt, and will read all!

  3. Khati Hendry says:

    I had to laugh at what your father said about only one shoe chewed up–do you think he was trying to make a joke, or he just didn’t get it? Anyway, delightful story, thank you.

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