I stopped there and undid my laces. When I took them off, the snow crushed and melted against my socked feet, wetting then freezing them at once. In the time that it took to hold out the pair, I was already shifting my weight from one foot to the other.
“Take mine.” I said. “It’s been ten seconds and I’m already miserable. I can’t imagine how you must feel.”
But he turned me away.
“No.” he said, “I prefer to steal them.”