Jonathan: This might be too much detail for you, but I really do want to tell you about the shoes I threw out today – very reluctantly. Clarks Nature, dark brown, size 12. Bought in Shrewsbury in 2000. My, but things were different then – seems now like a previous life! Very comfortable shoes – almost to the last. Very me. Worn most days – or the black ones I bought around the same time. Much travelled – all over the England, Wales, Scotland, Ireland. Countless miles just in airports over the past 10 years! But during my recent ‘exile’ in England they were more or less walked to death. Soles on the black pair cracked through during my last week in Welwyn GC, and never made it back home. Walking the dog this morning, wearing the brown shoes I found the foam-type soles pumping water into my socks. So that’s that: end of an era. Our shoes – the longer we wear them – the more they reflect us, become part of the story of us. But no point in being sentimental about it, into the bin they go. New shoes for new times – the pair I’ve had in the wardrobe for at least three years, waiting their turn.