Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The agony of de feet

NYC is brutal on the feet. When you don't have a car, you have to walk--a lot. Coming from California, where no one walks ANYWHERE, this whole walking culture has been an interesting adjustment. Good for the waistline, but an adjustment, nevertheless.

Never before have we been so conscious of our feet and our shoes. For Mary, it's become an experiment in shoe shopping, with mostly hits and a few misses. It's one thing to say, "Well, I'm only going to wear this pair of high heels if we go out to dinner." But the thing is, you have to GET to dinner--which involves walking to the bus stop (10-15 minutes), then arriving at the bus terminal and walking to the subway line (maybe another 10 minutes), and then walking from the subway stop to your destination (who knows how long).

Now you're thinking, "Thirty minutes of walking ... that's not so bad." It isn't, unless you're wearing shoes that simply aren't made for walking (ladies, you know what that means!). With all the grates and other obstacles, stilettos are out--don't really know how NYC women manage to keep their ankles from snapping when they wear these, and they DO wear them.

Wedge heels aren't all that sexy, but they're stable. Shorter heels are OK, but only if the shoes have a lot of padding toward the front to absorb the shocks.

Or you can do the tacky thing, and wear your sneakers until you actually arrive at the restaurant or other evening event. Yuck.

Right now, Mary is still trying to find the perfect brand. Clarks are OK but the styles aren't all that sophisticated--although they have a couple of new ones that might pass muster. Aerosoles are so-so. Her favorite pair of Geox (black patent leather flats) are cute around the office but don't offer much help when walking many, many blocks because the subway had suddenly stopped running (ah, the mysteries of the MTA).

Dankso is a definite maybe: one pair worked very well and are a good choice for fall (a bit heavy for summer).

Mary plans to look at the Camper and Fluevog stores in Soho for one more pair of work shoes. Boots for the winter are next on the list.

You may think this is awfully spendy, investigating (read: buying) all these shoe options. But there is nothing like the agony--or the ecstasy--of de feet. The perfect shoe is out there, somewhere ...

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