This is kind of a gross/dirty memory, but I'm going to share it anyway...
When I was growing up, the easiest way to solicit praises of being "the favorite child" from my mother was to rub her feet. Sometimes she would even pay us a dollar to rub her feet for half an hour or so. (Little did I know she was scamming us for child labor...haha!)
Attached to that memory of my mom's feet is the memory of all of us always being barefoot. I grew up in Phoenix, our grass was green, and we just didn't really wear shoes unless we had to. I am also deeply in love with sandals as the second best option to being barefooted.
As anyone could imagine, we got our floors pretty dirty. There were 5 kids in our family, Mom, Dad, and occasionally cats in the house, as well as visitors. So, the floors would get dirty. My mom was really big on sweeping and mopping, though, so they wouldn't stay dirty for long. However, on the days the floors didn't get cleaned, the bottoms of my mom's feet would get so black from being up and moving around all day long.
To me, as a child and as an adult, my mom's black-bottomed feet were a symbol of her devotion to being a mother and a homemaker. They reminded me of how much she loved us and how hard she worked to keep our home running smoothly.
Today I sat down at the computer and realized how dirty my feet were. I'd love to say it's because I'm a great homemaker and have been up and moving all day long, but I probably just need to sweep and mop the floors. :) I did do 2 loads of dishes and made an early dinner, though!
Interesting side note: there's a forum dedicated to discussing dirty feet!
~Dirty feet are happy feet.
~I need to get my feet dirty more often. :)