Thursday, 20 December 2012

A mixed week for shoes

This week started out badly. I have a pair of shoes that I love. They're the only pair of heels I can consistently walk in, especially on dirt roads where you really need a wedge, and they're red, and I love things that are red. And they've been with me a long time - I bought them in Cote d'Ivoire when I was 17 or so, and I've loved them ever since. They accidentally got left behind in Uganda when we moved back to the UK, and I made my parents find a way to rescue them. I really love these shoes, and they weren't even close to being worn out.

My beautiful shoes the way they're meant to look

But on Monday, I noticed that my beautiful shoes were sitting at an odd angle. Looking at them, I realised that the soles had been completely destroyed, making them totally unwearable and totally irreparable.

Seen from the side, the sole collapsing

A close up of its poor mauled sole :-(
I have no idea how this happened, but two working theories. One is insanely strong floor cleaning equipment, and the other is ants, which were crawling all over them when I first noticed. I suppose it could also be both.
 Either way, I am sad. I realise it's only a pair of shoes, but beautiful red shoes that I love and can walk in don't come along too often, and sometimes it's the little things that hit you worse than the big things. Christmas away from home I can deal with. A lost pair of shoes, even a pair of shoes that was old for a pair of shoes and widely travelled and so had had a good life, much better than most pair of shoes.... that really hurts.

Luckily, this week had some slightly better news on the shoe front. While buying a handbag from a very talented leather-worker, I noticed he also sold shoes. I asked if he took orders and he said he did - so I picked a pair where I liked the style and asked him to make them with a red upper and a neutral sole, rather than green and black, the original colours. I stood on a piece of paper and he traced my feet, and four days later I picked up my shoes.

My new shoes... as you can see from the colour scheme, my taste hasn't changed much in the last decade!
This is my shoe guy's handbag shop. Any takers?

 I would definitely give up my new shoes and much more to have my old shoes back, but it's still pretty cool that I live in a country where I can get leather shoes made-to-measure for the price of a cheap pair of ballet pumps in the UK.

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