My World: Shoe Repair Man

It was around 10pm and we were taking a walk after enjoying a lovely dinner at the “Yummy Yummy” Restaurant when we happened upon this Afghani businessman who had set up shop on the sidewalk right outside another restaurant. He is a delightful lifelong shoe repairman in a turban. With a large flattened cardboard box underneath him to designate his business space, he has everything he needs to perform his magic and repair shoes on the spot. All his tools, supplies, and wares are easily within his reach. My husband’s toe thongs were getting a little loose, so we stopped to have this elderly craftsman repair them. Initially we had to wait a few minutes for the man to finish a job for a waiting customer. Then as the senior citizen expertly tightened the thongs on both sandals, my husband asked how much this job would cost him. The man smiled and replied in Arabic, “Whatever you can give me is fine.” My hubby, always the jokester, told the man that he only had two riyals left (that’s 50 cents US). “That’s fine,” said the elderly craftsman. When the job was done about 10 minutes later, my hubby paid the happy worker 20 riyals ($5 US) and we were on our way. There was more work to be done – the busy repairman had two more customers waiting. Speedy same day service with a smile. Skilled experienced craftsman. Low competitive prices. Great professional service. Busy walk-by traffic location. No overhead costs. No taxes. Honest and reliable. What more could you ask for in a shoe repairman?

Take a peek at other people’s lives from all over the world by visiting That’s My World!


About SusieOfArabia

American woman now living in hubby's homeland of Saudi Arabia
This entry was posted in Culture, Life, Middle East, Photo, Saudi Arabia, Tradition and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to My World: Shoe Repair Man

  1. Krystal Bell says:

    Thanks for sharing that Susie,I really miss shoe repair service that I was used to in Europe.Here in America everything goes to the rubbish,men even throw away wonderful wives.I have a favorite pair of black boots that are in great need of repair.I’ll pray that one day I will be able to have them repaired.You have a smart husband,Susie,I do believe that he appreciates you.

  2. Gemma says:

    O wow! what a lovely moment to experience! Beautifully told and love the accompanying photo.

  3. Ilse says:

    Lovely photo. Charming story.

  4. bettyx1138 says:

    hey suzie – have u seen this blurb thing ( – u can have a book made easily. u should do it.

  5. Judy says:

    Love this story, Susie. This is becoming a lost art around here. Thanks for sharing this moment in your day.

  6. Arija says:

    A great way to earn an honest living. I am sure that is why the old man was sopolite and happy and did not quibble about price, he posessed all the dignity of real craftsman. Lovely post.

  7. soulbrush says:

    and their workmanship is usually excellent too…wow, for $5 amazing.

  8. What a delightful peek into your world! Thanks so much for sharing it with My World.

  9. babooshka says:

    I think he could teach many people about getting the job done here. Fascinating as always of a world so very different from most of us.

  10. Mar says:

    There are still shops in Spain to get your shoes repaired, for very little money so it is very convenient!
    Lovely shot and post.

  11. SandyCarlson says:

    Such a worthy trade. To have shoes worth repairing would be a wonderful thing.

  12. nadia says:

    Your post reminded me of a shoe repair man in our hometown Karachi, who has set up his shop on a flattened cardboard box, just like the one you’ve shown in the picture. He knew our family since I was in grade school.

    I met him again last year after a very long time. He still remembered me! I really look up to people like him to work hard and honestly despite the limited resources.

  13. Louise says:

    I certainly wouldn’t complain if there were someone like that on my street!

  14. Shoe repairmen or cobblers are getting scarce in Boston. I always try to get my shoes repaired and keep them as long as possible because it is so hard to break in new shoes.

  15. wren says:

    And very convenient, too.

  16. Guy D says:

    Great story and pic, thanks for sharing.

    Cheers and Happy New Year!
    Regina In Pictures

  17. ewok1993 says:

    This is the type of service I miss out here. That man’s going to have a good business I think.

  18. Fishing Guy says:

    Susie: What a wonderful look into your world in Saudi Arabia. You always share such wonderful things on your site.

  19. Geogypsy says:

    I love this. It would be great to have this type of service available here. Thank you for sharing.

    I’m feeling better.

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