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Arts & Culture

They’re All Named Pablo

Pablo's shop in the College Area has been in business for 28 years.
Tom Fudge
Pablo's shop in the College Area has been in business for 28 years.

This week I visited a cobbler I’ve patronized for 10-plus years and learned something new about his family. Pablo Serrano has three sons and they’re all named Pablo.

His shop is called Pablo’s Shoe Repair, but you probably guessed that.

I knew the old man had one namesake who currently manages the business. But upon my visit there was another Pablo helping out behind the counter and, as I said, there’s yet one more. Pablo Sr. has a big family. His daughters all have different names.

I should have asked him why he named all the boys the same. I suppose it makes things less confusing, kind of like in the Monty Python sketch where all the Australians are named Bruce.

Or maybe Pablo just likes the name Pablo.

I walked to Pablo’s Shoe Repair to pick up a pair of my wife’s boots, which raises another subject (the walk does, not the boots). Pablo’s shop is near the San Diego State campus and it’s about a mile away from my home in El Cerrito, where I moved three months ago. I’ve decided that one mile is walking distance.

Not only is Pablo’s shop a mile away from my home. KPBS is a mile away. Vons is a mile away. That’s a 17-minute walk, regardless of traffic. I’m very much into getting around on my own power. I was, that is, until I got hit by a car three years ago while riding my bike to work and ended up in the trauma ward at Scripps Mercy.

But now I’m going places afoot, reducing my carbon footprint, getting lots exercise and feeling entirely smug about it.

By the way, I also learned that Pablo lives around the corner from me. I walked past his house on my way home. Dude needs to paint his garage door.