An Old Fashioned Shoe Shine Experience
I let someone else polish my boots today. Something I have never done before. I always do it myself. First by cleaning with a damp cloth, then applying a thick layer of black Kiwi polish and finally buffing them till they shine. However, there is a farm and ranch trade show going on in our hotel building this week, and one of my co-workers showed me his freshly polished boots yesterday. So I decided to check out the shoeshine stand today.
Shoe shine stands were common back in the early 1900's. When everyone wore leather shoes that needed shining, you could find a shoeshine stand in every train station, saloon or street front. Back then, most working folks only owned one or two nice pairs of shoes or boots, and they took care of them. It's tough to find a shoeshine stand today. You might see one in an airport. Or at the fair or rodeo or maybe a western-themed tourist trap, like Wall Drug in South Dakota or maybe in the summer in Virginia City.
I don't know how much a traditional shoe shine normally costs. The one at the booth today was hosted by the Yellowstone Boys & Girls Ranch, and it was donation based. I gave the kid $10, which seemed fair for about five minutes worth of work.