the ones that got away

tonight, mary and christa came over to help me suss out my wardrobe for the roswell trip. it can be a little tricky to look nice in an environment where the uniform is shorts (which i refuse to wear right now) and shapeless VW logo t-shirts (which, although i do own more than i would like to admit to, i also refuse to wear). i can’t look too dressed up, and everything has to be practical for driving all day, or running around in the hot desert wind all morning. plus, how do you dress for an alien ball at a zoo, when you also refuse to wear an alien costume? well, we got it all figured out. they even convinced me to wear a pony tail with a pink scarf to further girlify “the very cute PODVISION baseball tee”: that i’ll be wearing during the car show.

anyway! of course, there was a shoe component of the whole fashion show thing. and that got me to thinking about the shoes that got away.

i was in high school. i’d grown up with one, maybe two pairs of immensely practical shoes being purchased for me each year. sandals for summer, something with a closed toe for winter. maybe some sneakers. the notion of having additional pairs of shoes was quite novel, but i did occasionally buy myself a really compelling pair with my babysitting money. i remember feeling _quite_ extravagant paying $40 for a pair of heels that i actually still own, and wore constantly in high school.

at this time– ’84? ’85? the vintage look was just starting to take hold in NC. the style that would eventually evolve into “shabby chic” was particularly of interest to me.

i spotted the magical shoes in a botique in north hills. as i recall them, they were black ballet slippers with some kind of beaded encrustment on the toes. they were delicate, beautiful, and little bit goth. i think i must have had a look at the price tag and been shocked. i remember that they were out of the question, even though i loved them _so much._

obviously, i’ve never forgotten them. there’s a few things like that from that era– beautiful things that i couldn’t afford, and never forgot.

i wonder if those shoes are part of the reason i seem to be drawn to ballet slipper style shoes that are flat and have a rounded toe? they’re difficult to wear, yet i have many pairs.

i also gave some thought this evening– out loud– as to whether my shoe buying habit could be considered a problem. mary said, “don’t ask me”. christa declined to comment. my hunger for cute shoes seems to grow with every pair i buy.