Definition of cool one's heels in English:

cool one's heels


  • 1

    see heel
    • ‘You could make an appointment with your doctor for the day after tomorrow - and then cool your heels for 40 minutes in an overheated waiting room.’
    • ‘The reporters who stay cool their heels in the lobby.’
    • ‘Perhaps cooling his heels all these years was worthwhile.’
    • ‘Well, drivers will have to cool their heels in traffic.’
    • ‘And all this while the King of Spain was left cooling his heels at the bar.’
    • ‘There we all were, cooling our heels in a hotel lobby waiting for our first appointments of the day.’
    • ‘Joburgers will have to cool their heels with some freezing weather this month, before the summer rains set in.’
    • ‘When I finally get to them after they've been cooling their heels for five or ten minutes they generally drop a dollar on the bar.’
    • ‘Why does Irwine want Adam to cool his heels for ten days, doing nothing?’
    • ‘But she can just cool her heels.’
  • 2Be kept waiting.

    ‘their delegation was left cooling their heels for days’
    • ‘I'll be with the team until kick-off and I'll then have to take my seat in the stands, kicking my heels at missing out.’
    • ‘And all this while the King of Spain was left cooling his heels at the bar.’
    • ‘Life companies have come under intense pressure to reduce their exposure to stock markets, leaving activist fund managers kicking their heels.’
    • ‘The three-week break from rugby union has given most injuries time to heal, but York faced the prospect of kicking their heels for another week.’
    • ‘After half-an-hour cooling my heels, I carried on to Chesterfield.’
    • ‘After nine months of kicking our heels, it's starting to look like we're finally going to see some action.’
    • ‘After two hours cooling my heels in Bath Street, I'm happy to toe that line.’
    • ‘Surrounded by fragrant pine woods, it's an ideal place to cool your heels.’
    • ‘There, in LA, he kicked his heels, picked up some music tips and eventually played guitar like his hands had been sent to him by the gods.’
    • ‘But with the season rapidly drawing to a close, Yorkshire sense that every day is vital and it was frustrating for the players having to kick their heels instead of trying to make certain of nailing the title after a wait of 33 years.’
    • ‘At her last London press conference she kept journalists cooling their heels for hours while the podium was reset to favour her preferred profile.’
    • ‘But instead, he was kicking his heels in frustration 12,000 miles away at his home in the suburbs of Sydney.’
    • ‘While we've been playing the top Welsh sides, they've been kicking their heels, so we knew their fitness wouldn't be up to it.’
    • ‘Their ages meant they were part of the groups of teenage boys who hung around, kicking their heels and getting bored.’
    • ‘In such circumstances, home-grown hopefuls were left kicking their heels on the sidelines.’
    • ‘For those not involved, international weeks can often prove an interminable bore, a week or more of kicking their heels instead of a ball.’
    • ‘Little wonder that Ross, who was to kick his heels for the remainder of the tournament, joined a small army of others to express his incredulity in public.’
    • ‘One chapter sees him kicking his heels in a film executive's waiting room, eager to get a break.’
    • ‘But before the summer was over the timber yard had closed and John Hunter was back home, kicking his heels once more.’
    • ‘Many footpaths remain closed, leaving walkers kicking their heels or taking to Tarmac or perhaps heading for the coast.’