My Agony and Your Ecstasy
You had a time in the fetes and on the road, for you and all the rest of us who could not make it home for Carnival. My mother always says not to envy anyone, but I’m sure this is an exception, right mom? I was born in November, so according to the saying, a true ‘Carnival baby’. By Trini standards though, I’m a stush masquerader (something I haven’t done in a few years), and feter. But I would have been the happiest woman alive this year to be in the hot sun enjoying the season. I reminisced on last year and thought… gosh, what I’d give to be in RAMA or Yorke’s.
Due to the time difference, I had all intentions of watching the live streaming of Soca Monarch; but oh well, that didn’t happen! I love being there feeling the energy and enjoying the performances, or at the least watching it from my couch…all of it! It didn’t happen this year and I feel lost.
Your Agony… Swollen feet
Many of you tortured me on Facebook with your recaps and pictures from the fetes. And I wondered how some of the new masqueraders, and even the seasoned ones would feel Ash Wednesday, when I know you guys are getting up early to head to work. The serious feters, how would your feet feel? Your legs, your waist…your body as a whole? What about the artistes, hairdressers, makeup artists, police, band security, bar personnel, vendors?
Some of you would have swollen feet by Ash Wednesday, if not long before. The problem with swollen feet is getting footwear to facilitate them. For those who wear heels or pointy tips to work, it may not be the best idea when your feet are aching or swollen. Wearing flatter, more comfortable shoes is advised for a little while, until the discomfort and puffiness go away.
Are your feet just tired and achy?
Try stretching them out. Do a few calf stretches and pull your toes back to stretch out the arch of your feet. You can also try rolling your foot over a cold bottle. A rum or water bottle works well for this and will soothe the feet.
Comfortable does not have to mean ugly!
Just think about how many hours you were on your feet, and the surfaces you stood on. Typically on either concrete or grass. It is a long time to be uncomfortable!
I would suggest that in future you wear either a wedge or low heel to keep your feet most comfy. A low heel with the addition of a platform can give the appearance of a higher heel than what it actually is. This takes stress off your forefoot and is less likely to have your foot sliding forward and cramping up your toes.
Wedges enable your foot to spread out the pressure. This way you are spreading your weight through all of your feet rather than just the heel and toe. Wedges are also less likely to sink into the grass when it’s rainy.
Gel Cushions and Padding
In future don’t leave the house without a pair of gel cushions for the balls of your feet. They barely take up any room. You may think you will be fine without them, but your feet will thank you later when you sneak into the bathroom and slip some extra comfort into your shoes.
Foot and Body Cool Down
Pamper your feet and body now that the feteing and mas playing are over. Attend to any areas that are calloused or have corns developing. These areas are most likely to rub and blister further if not addressed. Give them a good rub with an emery board when you get out of the shower. Don’t forget to give them a massage with some moisturiser or a heel balm afterwards.
If the callous or corns require professional treatment, book an appointment to have a Podiatrist remove them for you, or do a pedicure to get the feet pampered and back to normal. Get a foot or leg massage, better yet a full body massage along with a sauna to rejuvenate. The sauna will help with detoxification as well. For those with swelling of the feet, ice and elevate them; massages are an excellent choice for treating with this too.
Another problem that tends to be a fallout from Carnival is damaged nails. I can personally testify to losing my one of my big toenails on a couple of occasions after playing mas. Because of prompt treatment, they grew back. Please check your nails; if there’s any form of discolouration or apparent infection… you know what to do. After all, we love to wear our strappy shoes, so healthy looking feet should be part of the package.
Your feet mirror your general health . . . cherish them!