I first saw these shoes on Nordstrom.com and I remember the day clearly: It was a May afternoon on the Oregon Coast, I was sitting in the guest bedroom at my parent's house. In that moment I knew there had never been, and never would be again, a more perfect pair of yellow peep toes.
Two weeks later I was in a Nordstroms with Mom. We found them in the shoe department. Mom agreed: Shoemakers of the world could throw in the towel, nothing will ever surpass these in beauty or impracticality. So she bought them for me. And I schlepped them to Taiwan.
My mom didn't buy me high heels until I was 16. This was a good policy in a women's lib. kind of way. It was a bad policy in that I never really learned how to walk in anything but flats.
Whenever I slip anything on with more than a one-inch heel, James becomes visibly distressed, to which I snap, "Out of my way, short man!" And he responds, "I'm just really worried you're going to hurt yourself." If I'm in heels, the night isn't complete until I almost break an ankle.
I based my Saturday night ensemble on these shoes. Finding a dress in my closet that both went with these shoes and was appropriate for a family-friendly Christmas party took half an hour.
James was already in Taipei, so I had to brave the unlit, uneven sidewalks of Nankan by my lonesome. I caught the bus and as I clacked down the aisle to my seat, passengers on both sides stared at my feet - two dozen pairs of eyes that seemed to say, "Bitch, are you crazy?"
At 5'8'', I'm already taller than most women and eye-level with most men here. But Saturday night I was downright Amazonian. I felt like Bill Murray in Lost in Translation, except not so old and never as funny.
Miraculously, I made it to the hotel without incident. Once there, I only had to walk as far as the buffet line.
The road home was another matter. And James declined to piggyback me. My feet felt fine on every trip to and from the ice cream station. But trekking home was killer.
These aren't shoes, I realized, they're sunshine-colored torture traps - specially designed to concentrate my entire body weight on to two teeny pinpoints on either foot. The conversation between the bus stop and home went:
"ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch-
"You going to make it?"
"Want to switch shoes?"
"Fine. Ouch, ouch, ouch, ouch...."
When will I wear them again? As soon as I have occasion, probably to Christmas dinner next week.