January 28th, 2008

red shoes


When I was six years old and needed new winter boots, I pleaded with my mother to buy me the shiny chocolate brown faux leather boots with equally fake yellow-tinged sheepskin lining, a little heel and a slim-line bootleg I'd seen in a shoe shop in the centre of town; for no other reason than that they were the hippest boots I'd ever seen. I dreamed of those boots for weeks, and thought of how good I would feel owning them. My mother however, decided otherwise - she believed children's footwear ought to be practical and comfortable, with plenty of room to accomodate growing feet. So instead of the coveted boots, I got a pair of flat, wide bootleg, beige-y leather boots without sheepskin lining that I hated at first, but came to appreciate if not exactly love later.

The first thing I did when I started earning from a Saturday job at age 15 was to buy a pair of high-heeled, knee-high boots made of red canvas. Two years earlier, Mum had presented me with my first, 3 inch high, heels. They were meant as shoes to practice in, as the heels were made entirely of rubber: put a foot wrong, and you'd fall flat on your face. I wasn't allowed to wear them outside, or unsupervised. I don't know where she got them from, but they taught me how to walk in heels very well: every time I twisted or otherwise injured my ankle, I was wearing flats...running shoes, actually.

Anyway, it's no secret that shoes are important to me. They're not just a foot covering, protection against the environment, or even just adornment to me; they help me express or show something of my personality. I can look back and remember my life in shoes, and here is a small selection:

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