30 November 2010

Gotta Have Sole

After a couple of Christmases, where nearly all my gifts from my parents were returned or exchanged,  Momsy decided that it was easier for me to pick out my own presents. She wouldn't have to waste time in the stores deliberating over the pink fluffy robe or brown corduroy dress. I wouldn't feel badly returning both the pink fluffy robe and the brown corduroy dress. I shop, she wraps, and everybody is happy. After all, it is the most wonderful time of the year.

So, comfortable dress flats were tops on the Christmas list this year. After searching high and low for the perfect pair, I ordered Belgian shoes. My big ticket gift, they are pure luxury -- soft leather, handsewn inside-out and 'turned', which is the key to the comfort.  In fact, they've been described as the most comfortable shoes on earth. Some say, "Belgian loafers are to shoes, what McKinsey is to consulting.They're a fly under the radar, those in the know, we don't stoop to advertising, kind of cult item."

But they've also been criticized for being pricey, delicate and impractical. Perfect. They'd be right at home alongside all of the other pricey, delicate and impractical shoes in my closet.

There was only one problem: We live hours from the Belgian Shoes storefront in Manhattan, and their website has minimal functionality. With no way to order online, I had to print the order form and mail it. What a production. Only to find out that the color I wanted was out of stock. So, several weeks later, THE shoes -- olive viper -- finally arrived at the doorstep.

I tore open the box, well, like a little kid on Christmas, to find my delicate, soft leather slippers. It was love at first sight until I spotted the notice... "Belgian soft-soled casuals should be thoroughly worn in before attahcing corrugated rubber soles... There is a charge for sole application."  You wear them, break them in, and then send them back for soles???  Who knew that they'd come without soles?! Apparently only those in the know.  

There you have it. These senseless beauties will go back go to the cobbler at 110 East 55th Street when the time is right. Lesson learned.

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