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‘Only the bearer knows where the shoe pinches’. Elucidate the statement with reference to the story The Letter.

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Value Points : 

Always respect the feelings of others.

We must not disrespect and contempt the feelings of others. 

In this chapter Coachman Ali’s daughter got married and left him.

At this moment he understands the meaning of love and separation, which he doesn’t when he was a clever hunter.

Everyone in the post office laughs at him/mocks at him.

Postmaster also behaves rudely with him and times he call him ‘a pest’.

When he suffers with the same suffering and pain, he realizes his mistakes and regrets for his bad act.

Then he wishes to help Ali.

Detailed Answer : 

The statement ‘Only the bearer knows where the shoe pinches’ relates aptly to the story ‘The letter’, which is a good example of the Karma theory. We should always respect the feelings of others and not disrespect and contempt the feeling of others. In ‘The Letter’ the protagonist’, Ali’s daughter got married and left him. His life turned over a new leaf. The man (Ali) who was a skilful hunter changed his way of life and waited day in and day out for a letter from Miriam, his daughter. He went to the post office everyday where the postmaster and the postmen made fun of him. They called him ‘a pest. But a day came, when the postmaster’s daughter got ill. He also went through the same pain when he waited for his daughter’s letter. He realised Ali’s anguish and pain. He regretted for having made fun of Ali. He wished to help Ali. So when finally one day Miriam’s letter arrived, the postmaster went with Lakshmi Das, the clerk, to deliver the letter on his grave. Realisation came late to the postmaster but the shoe really pinched him when he himself went through the same pain and suffering which Ali had undergone.

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