Summer is here, time for sandals, but my favorite black pair has fallen apart. What can I do? Maybe I can look on the Internet and find a pair just like them. I search and search and follow dead links to dead websites until I finally realize that last year’s sandals have gone out of style. So, I decided to find a different pair, something similar — but different. I checked out online shoe stores and found several pairs that I liked.
I’m a sandals person. I would wear them in winter with socks if people didn’t think I was nuts. I’ve had all kinds of sandals through the years. They can be cheap or expensive, but the one thing they must always be is comfortable, the next thing to going barefoot.
I found a pair that I loved, marked down to $30. I love a bargain as much as I love sandals. Trouble is, they only came in brown. The other colors were sold out and the shoes were reduced, undoubtedly to unload the brown leftovers.
But, I still wanted a pair of black sandals.
I thought about the 70’s when we used to wear earth shoes to college. They looked like regular shoes, but inside the heels were lower than the toes. Too bad they were a fad and the company quit making them after a few years.
On a lark, I decided to type “earth shoes” into a search engine. I couldn’t believe my eyes when several places that sold them popped up. It seems the “going green” trend has created a new market and they are bringing back earth shoes. I checked them out and sure enough they were genuine Earth Shoes, just like I remembered them. I don’t remember them being so expensive, though.
“Good for your feet and good for the earth,” went the sales hype.
The defining feature of Earth Footwear is a slight angle that positions the toes higher than the heels. The angle re-distributes body weight. The inside molds to the shape of the foot and supports it. Not only that, but they are environmental-friendly, have biodegradable soles, and come in earth-friendly vegan styles.
I was sold. What’s a hundred bucks when it stands between me and saving the environment?
I couldn’t send them my credit card number fast enough. Who cares if they are the ugly duckling of footwear? It’s the way the shoes feel that counts, and “I’m saving my feet along with the earth.” I wanted to become an earthling, just like the ad said, and benefit from their innovative technology. I swallowed the media hype whole. “It’s all about being healthy, fit, and true to myself,” I repeated.
When the box arrived in the mail, I couldn’t wait to put them on. Except for the thick soles, they didn’t look too bad. But, “Ouch, what is that big lump under my arch?” My heels went down, my toes went up. I felt like I was wearing elf shoes. As I pranced about on my heels, I suddenly remembered that I was much younger when Earth Shoes went around the first time.
The company advised wearing the shoes for only one hour the first day, and then adding another hour each day after that to become accustomed to them. I didn’t have time for all that nonsense. I wore them the next day — all day. My feet were so sore that I could barely walk afterwards. I had to leave them off for a day or two. After several tries, I almost adjusted to walking around on my heels. Anything to save my feet and the earth, I thought, even if it means walking like an elf.