Other than family and friends, there are really only three things that I actively miss about America when travelling abroad: good Mexican food (ironic?); toilet seat covers (that’s one “Going Green” initiative I’m willing to be an earth-wrecking, selfish pig about); and, my closets (yes, plural) of shoes.
(I used to miss my electric toothbrush, but I got a carrying case for it this time around.)
I believe every woman has her shopping vice. For some, it’s make-up. For others, it’s hair care products. Some women have a particular fabric that they can’t resist. (My mother never met a 100% silk article of clothing that she didn’t have to own IMMEDIATELY.)
Other women are purse and bag junkies. (I feel really sorry for them – that’s the most expensive shopping vice of them all. I spill way too much coffee to warrant a $500 bag.) And, there are some women that cannot resist a certain print. (A friend of mine recently espoused on how “leopard print” is the new black.)
For me, my shopping vice is unequivocally shoes.
Oh shoes… even the word itself sounds magical and lilting, like a soft rainfall on a fluffy sheep’s wool, as it dreamily meanders across the Irish countryside on a spring day. Shoes, shoes, shoes… what a marvelous word. *starts day dreaming of Ferragamos*
I’m sorry, was I writing a blog here?
Anyway, the hardest part of packing for this trip has definitely been how I can reasonably carry as many shoes as possible on the trip; and, the all-important question for me was whether or not I could find beauty and function in the same shoe.
I am sad to report that the answer is a resounding NO.
But, just in case any of you ladies out there wants to plan a world trip of her own, and you are wondering what kind of shoes to pack, here’s what I came up with after four months of shopping and two nervous breakdowns:
SHOES #1: Hiking Boots (Merrill Moab Ventilator Mid-Hiking Boots)
AKA: What, am I trekking through the Himalayas here?
The fact of the matter is I can trip over paper. So, in order to save my ankles, I have these.
Merrill does make a great hiking boot. These bad girls have saved me from many a sprained ankle hiking in and around San Diego County.
SHOES #2: Black Slip-on Clogs/Slippers (Merrill Jungle Moc Shoes – Black)
AKA: Basically holes and a fabric choice away from being the great Satan, Crocs.
These shoes are what I have to look forward to in about 30-40 years, when the time comes where I no longer give a crap about how anything I wear looks, as long as it’s “comfortable”. (Stacey and Clinton both shuddered.)
They really do feel like I’m walking on fluffy clouds made from angel wings and kitten dreams, though. =)
SHOES #3: Blue Sneakeresque Slip-ons (Sperry Top-Sider SON-R Feedback Bootie Low Water Shoes)
AKA: I’m deluding myself into thinking I’m wearing fashionable sneakers.
While looking up the link to these shoes on REI’s website, I discovered that these are actually supposed to be shoes you use for water sports and activities. (This just shows how much I read instructions on the packaging.)
Still, they’re very well-ventilated and also comfy. They’re a nice compromise for going through monsoon areas without looking like a German backpacker.
SHOES #4: Black hiking flats (Patagonia Maha Breathe Slippers)
AKA: The only pair I wouldn’t be embarrassed to be seen in if I ran into an ex.
I mainly got these because of the air vents in the sides, and they can pass for dress shoes… if the person looking at them is terribly near-sighted. Here’s to hoping the doormen at the clubs are all legally blind! (That’ll help with the “being over 30” issue, too: “Let me in! I’m still young enough to dance without injuring myself… more than twice!”)
There are many things one has to give up in order to go on a trip around the world. There’s leaving family and friends, a solid career, and even all of those daily “extras” like *Starbucks, eating out, and unnecessary car trips in order to save for said trip.
*(I’m such a liar. I didn’t give up Starbucks… like, AT ALL. I’ve heard other people say it’s a great way to save up for a trip. For me, it’s a great way for me to want to give up on living. I canceled my Norton anti-virus subscription, instead. Beware if I send you any e-mails requesting wired money to save the prime minister of Nigeria.)
For me, unfortunately, my adorable yet crippling shoes shan’t be able to come on this trip. If you’re wondering what I’m talking about, here are a few examples of what will not make the cut:
CUTE SHOES #1: Hot Red Sex Bombs
I wasn’t going to buy these because they were so painful. But, a woman walking by me in the store stopped everything she was doing in her shopping endeavor to exclaim, “Those shoes are HOT!!!”
I’m a sucker for unsolicited shoe compliments.
I couldn’t even make it through an entire party in my own house in them. But, they make my legs look like pencils. I heart them while sitting.
CUTE SHOES #2: Black Gladiator Strappies
I’ve been waiting for an excuse to wear these with my new, Calvin Klein “LBD”. Someone invite me someplace fashionable, dangit!
CUTE SHOES #3: Black Vinyl Platform Shoes
I don’t know why I delude myself into thinking I have places to go that would warrant wearing these types of shoes. They are making my closet look super So-Ho in the meantime.
CUTE SHOES #4: Lace-up Caramel Brown Boots
Paired with short, beachy skirts and dresses, they make me look like I’m 21 again… or, at least my feet do.
CUTE SHOES #5: Giraffe Print Flats
These are super cute and would fit in great with the “world tour” theme. Alas, they have no cushioning. Also, they might attract monkeys. Seriously.
CUTE SHOES #6: Panda Slippers
Don’t think for a moment these wouldn’t come with me if there was any room in my luggage!
Anyway, the moral of this blog is there are certain sacrifices that must be made for these kinds of trips; unfortunately, many of them are beauty-related.
For the trip of a lifetime, though, these sacrifices can and must be made. After all, barring some catastrophic event, all of my adorable shoes will be waiting for me when I get home.
That being said, I’m dang well-and-good making sure there’s enough room in my luggage for a four-month supply of anti-wrinkle cream. Shoes can wait, but premature aging won’t.