The Right Shoes

quatre femmes Chanel

When I went to Paris, I made the ridiculous and stupid mistake of wearing brand new shoes my first night there.  By this point in my life, I really, really should know better.  But the shoes were flats, and they were really comfy when I wore them around my house for two hours before the trip.  I thought they’d be great for strolling through Paris in addition to being cute.

They shredded my heels.  In just an hour or two, they just completely destroyed my feet.  I maybe walked a mile total — from our apartment to a restaurant and then along the Seine a bit, but I had a blister that covered the whole back of my left foot and multiple small blisters on my right heel.  I had to stop in a pharmacy and buy a box of band-aids just to make it home from dinner that night.  With two days of walking ahead of me, I was so annoyed with myself.  Such bad planning!  

The other shoes I brought for the trip were all pairs I’d worn a million times and wouldn’t cause problems on their own, but I already HAD a problem because even old shoes hurt when you have gigantic, stupidity-induced blisters.

It is hard to look adorable and glamorous strolling through Paris when you’re limping.

I went out and bought sneakers the next morning.  I had no choice if I wanted to make it through the next few days of walking.  Fortunately, there are about a million cute sneaker options AND sneakers were a big trend during fashion week, so I was obviously just being super trendy and cool. 

I got these from a really cool shop called Colette.  They saved me from limping along in agony.  Plus they were cute and sporty and trendy.  Winning.  (But still replacing band-aids every two to three hours.)

new balance_coletteColette was a really cool shop and had about a million things I wanted to buy.  But nothing that looked as good as a pair of shoes that wouldn’t make my feet bleed.

My friend Allison made the same mistake and also needed to get sneakers.  Honestly we are at a point in our lives where we’ve had enough uncomfortable shoe experiences that I would think we’d know better, but sometimes the allure of new shoes before a trip is too great to turn down.  So you buy new shoes but don’t break them in and end up with blisters.  (Although then you do end up with new shoes DURING the trip to save your feet from the blisters, so maybe it’s not so dumb after all.)

She got some insanely cool Ash platform slip-ons.

Ash platform sneakers

The right shoes can seriously make or break a trip.  To be fair, I really thought that since they were flats, my new shoes would be fine for walking through the city.  I think they will be after I’ve worn them for more than two hours and the leather softens up.

If I need any new shoes for my Italy trip coming up, I better go buy them now and break them in before we arrive in Rome. 


Also, some observations on European vs. American style, and a philosophical question about shoes.


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