Children's shoes in Israel - there's a gap in the market here! by Pat Franklin

I'm in Israel visiting the grandchildren and can tell you there is a big gap in the market here for good children's shoes.

Today I took our little grandaughters to a children's shoe shop and the owner asked me what size.  Really!  I asked if she could measure their feet, and she said 'not in Israel.'  I said surely she had a measuring tool.  She looked around the cash desk and said, No, not in israel.  I told her that in England and America they would always measure children's feet for length and width.  'Not in Israel.'  All the widths are the same, and what width that might be is a mystery. It certainly is not in any of the shoes.

She took one of their shoes off, looked at the size inside and gave me the next size up.  That was it.  Enjoy. 

So I took them to a department store which had children's shoes.  Same rigamarole.  'Not in Israel.'  So I gave uup and bought the girls some Hush Puppy summer shoes a size bigger than their old ones. 

What a downgrade from the Jewish shoe shop where my parents always bought our shoes when we were growing up.  It was a mini department store called Zimmerman's and they were the only Jewish family in our mainly Catholic and Lutheran community in south St Louis.  Everybody shopped at Zimmerman's, where the owner, Eli, and his assistant, Manny, always had their measuring tool handy and always gave us just the right size shoes.  What a treat it was to be taken to their store and know that you would receive excellent shoes and excellent service.

Oh for a Zimmerman's here in Israel!  I heard that Eli's son went on to become a vice-president of Macy's.  If so, I hope he or someone with some retail clout will hear of this and open a chain of children's shoe shops in Israel.  Please!


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