Jim and I decided to do something different for our Christmas present to each other this year. We don't need any "stuff," and we hadn't had a real vacation since we moved to Florida. So, we gave each other a trip to Williamsburg, Virginia.

We left the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Perhaps we should have thought that over. The traffic was ridiculous. We figured out that everyone was on their way home from Thanksgiving. We grew tired of battling traffic, so we stopped for the night in South Carolina. We found a motel right off I-95, had some dinner and slept for 10 hours.

Sunday's traffic was just as bad. In addition to that, I had developed a pain in my right heel. How one gets a pain in her heel when all she is doing is riding in a car is a mystery. But, the shoes I wore were "closed-in" loafers - the first time I had worn "cold weather" shoes since last winter. I'm usually in sandals or barefoot.

When we arrived in Williamsburg, we unloaded the car and found our room. Walking the hall of the hotel made me realize that I was going to have to deal with the heel pain before I could enjoy walking through Colonial Williamsburg in the morning.

I thought at first of wearing the one pair of sandals I had brought along (in case there was an indoor pool). However, the temperature outside hovered in the 40's. No sandals. My toes would have been blue. Then I thought of finding a shoe store and buying a comfortable pair of sneakers. That would be dumb, since I have a perfectly good, new pair of sneakers in my closet at home. Don't bother to ask why I didn't pack them. I have no answer for that.

So, I bit the bullet and wore the loafers to walk the streets of my favorite city in the world. By noontime, I was almost crying in pain. That's when the old female ingenuity took over. When we went back to our room for a rest, I took a tea bag from our hotel and squished it into the heel of my shoe. Jim said, "The pack is going to rip and you'll have tea all over your shoe." My response was, "I'll deal with that when it happens."

Amazingly, the heel pain grew less and less. Apparently, the lining of the shoe was crinkled somehow and pressing on my heel. With the tea bag there, I didn't feel any pain. I wore the tea bag for three days. It never ripped and I didn't get tea leaves in my shoe. I suppose that somewhere along the way I could have purchased Dr. Scholl's heel inserts, but the tea bag worked so well that I let it be.

Williamsburg was wonderful. We tried to get inside all the important buildings, took some photos of the Christmas decorations, bought some souvenirs, ate one magical dinner at Shields Tavern - a colonial restaurant, and had a great time. Our trip back to Florida was so easy that we did it all in one day. Traffic was minimal, the weather was fine, and we took turns driving. My heel didn't bother me at all.

As we unpacked from the trip, I took out the tea bag and threw it away. I also contemplated throwing away the shoes that caused the heel pain. But, on second thought, I put them back in the closet. We have more tea bags.

IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO CONTACT DR. SMITH, SHE CAN BE REACHED AT HER EMAIL ADDRESS: JSMITH1313@CFL.RR.COM OR IN CARE OF THIS NEWSPAPER.