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Saturday, November 6, 2010

Misermeister of Shoes

My "new" parsimonious shoes

Okay, the shoes are not parsimonious. They are the result of my parsimonious ways.

Double Catastrophe
You can laugh at this—I lost the right shoe of the black pair and tore up the left shoe of the white pair. So, I have been wearing in the yard the mismatched good “pair” that is left. I try to run behind a bush or my car to hide if a car drives by or rush indoors so no one will see me wearing an odd pair of shoes. The hens don’t care what I wear when I am bringing them food.

My feet do not sit sideways like that. Yes, in this weather I do wear those bulky white socks.

My Dilemma
What do you do when a pair of shoes starts to wear out? What do you do when you find out that your favorite shoe is being discontinued?

What do you do when you lose a shoe or one tears up and you have no shoes to wear? Look at the picture! ( Okay, I had shoes for good but none to wear in the yard or in the house.) If I wore good shoes in the rain and mud to care for chickens or take out the garbage, I would ruin the ones that were still in good shape.) This black pair and the white pair were for mucking around. I would also, without the least bit of embarassment wear either the black pair or the white pair into the grocery in a blinding rain.

Let me digress: A Love Story
When the best fitting pair of shoes I ever owned started to wear out, I found out that the shoe was being discontinued. Immediately, I bought six more pair. Now, over fifteen, NO, twenty years later, I look at them and cannot bear to throw them out. It is not just thrift or just parsimony that makes me keep these shoes! And, it is not hoarding! (I just got rid of several pair, just not these.) It is pure, unadulterated love.

They are leather with rubber soles. Best of all, they have a T strap, so cute! They stay on my feet but do not have ties. I don’t wear shoes that tie. My feet will scream, honestly! These shoes are as comfortable as house shoes. As a matter of fact, when I purchased my first pair, after being on my feet and walking much of the day in my position as a teacher, I did not kick these off when I came home. That was a first for me.

When a pair is so worn looking that I get out a new pair, the old “good pair” is worn for muddy or wet yard work. They are still serviceable for taking out the garbage, tending chickens, mowing. I always kept two pair in use this way. I am at the end of my shoe stash. As a matter of fact, the last pair has a worn insole, broken down insides, but still looks great.

Nubuck really holds up to wear and tear. After discovering that Nubuck is warmer than smooth leather, I may never buy anything else. Okay, I digress. But, you get the idea.

Now, I have decided to resurrect all the shoes with a trip to the shoe repair shop. He can condition the leather, glue sole to upper, and replace the insole. They won’t be new; some will be just wearable without leaking. Some will look really nice. The pair that became hard after a good soaking walk in the rain and neglect will at least be something to wear in the yard or in the house. Or, I may stick them back in the car for a roadside emergency. We will see. We will see.

I have one white pair (huge purchase mistake), two smooth black leather pair, and two black Nubuck pair. If all are redeemed, I will not need shoes for maybe another five years, depending on how fast they wear out the second time. My only concern is the comfort of the insole. Right now, they are lumpy and worn thin, but I hope that can be helped by new insoles. This will be an expensive project for me right now, but I love those shoes and have worn them all to pieces.

No matter what these cost to repair, it will be less than replacing shoes. The most important part to me is that they will feel right. They are leather. Some cow gave up a great deal for me to have these, so I am honoring the cow by repairing a hide she must have cherished in her own way.

Do you understand how much I love, Love, LOVE these shoes? Plus, my miserly mind (frugal?) sees new life in them. Okay, if I could find them new, I would buy just one pair!

PS to Easy Spirit—bring back the APT1.
Linda (repairing shoes one pair at a time.)

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