Tuesday, September 2, 2008

shoes and cheese

Normally I do not enjoy shopping. I will put it off for as long as possible. Which is why I was frantically seeking shoes for the wedding I was to attend the day before my flight. I went into the other mall in my town, the one with the better shoe stores, and found a nice pair of strappy sandals at the first store at the top of the escalator. So, having time to kill before meeting my friend for coffee, I kept wandering to the other shoe stores, just in case, y'know. And found these
They are NAOT. The photo doesn't show off the lovely 'burnt copper' colour, which looks more burgundy to me. They are absolutely the most comfortable shoes I have ever worn in my life. It was like walking in my slippers. They were just as comfy with or without socks. I hiked up and down hills and around the streets and through the tourist sites and to various groceries, galleries and gardens...my feet blissfully unaware they were being made to work. They almost made me want to walk even more.

To walk around shops in Britain is much more fun than doing so in Canada. Don't know why, but when I am on holiday I love to shop. I could happily spend an hour in a grocery store admiring the different products, the packaging, the prices! And everything looks so different in the dress and decor shops - well they would, wouldn't they? Since I only had carry on luggage I was severely restricted in my purchases.

Which, in the grand scheme of things was fine as I was really spending all my money on things like coffee and food. Everywhere seemed to be busy with prospective buyers of whatever was available, though I am not sure how those Brits manage with the prices of everything. An example was one treat of a light snack of 2 coffees, 1 tea, and 2 muffins which came to a not unusual grand total of 8.25 BPS that translated to 18.15 CAD.

I fell in love with something called a Love Bar from Pret-a-Manger - eating my way through 6 of them while in Bath. I didn't even try to calculate the calories or the cost of the small but yummy bar. I pretended the almonds, pistachios and vanilla pumpkin seeds made it healthy.

I then moved on to devouring as much smoked salmon as I could. Which was no difficult chore. It was everywhere. In my scrambled eggs at the hotel, in the take out sandwiches at Pret and Marks&Spencer. In every restaurant and pub we visited, there it was on the menu just as if it were an everyday ordinary thing to include in a sandwich or salad like, say, tomato. Or cheese. Oh, and the cheese they offer? Not Swiss or Cheddar or Havarti. No, it would be Brie!

And then there is that little joy of buying wine in a Marks or Tesco's...

So, my shoes were the best investment I made.


  1. Brie, Mmmmmmm. It's funny that you thought things were expensive over there. I thought Canada was CRAZY expensive. I guess I should stay in Texas where everyhting is cheap. Oh and welcome back, if I haven't said it yet.

  2. LOL Britain is expensive because of the exchange rate. I always do that when I head over there. Translate in my head and go ohhhh no, ain't paying that!

    I'm like you, I love to shop when I'm travelling. Looove to look at stuff, prices, styles. I remember Marks & Spencer, their stuff was so good. And they closed all their stores in Canada years ago *sigh*

    Glad you found comfy shoes. Going to Europe cannot be enjoyable if you don't have comfy shoes.

  3. all sounds good - apart from our prices ( we feel it too )
    good to catch up, Katie, x

  4. Glad you are back and appear to have had a good vacation. Those shoes do look great for walking.

  5. Ohhhh, I miss Marks & Spencer's Food Hall. Shrimp Thai salad, oh yum. I know what you mean about shopping in other countries. Just the novelty of it makes it appealing. And when you're on vacation you feel you have a right to buy something. I don't like shopping here either! Oh gee, we have a lot in common, eh?

    Those Naots look super comfy. How 'bout the strappy ones - comfy? Hmm, maybe not.

  6. The Naots look well comfy, I want a pair.

    As to our prices, I hate going shopping now because it seems to be getting more and more expensive every time I head out. *sigh :(

    I love marks and spencer's food, is where I go when I decide to treat myself to a special meal. Now I am hungry!


  7. geewits: when it is not so hot I might just wander down your way. You should have been here when the $ was worth .76!!

    UA: and this time the exchange rate was better at 2.20 instead of 2.65. I gave up translating.

    Katie: I'm sure you do feel the pinch. Go to France, I kept hearing!!

    LGS: I had a wonderful, relaxing time. And these were even better than running shoes for walking. And they went well with jeans, or a skirt.

    Ruth: No, the strappy things were worn only once. These NAOTS are for life.

    MA: I loved trying out the different flavours of chips (crisps) and yoghourts - I bought one of everything! And choked when I saw the price of juice when I came home!

  8. I LOVE those shoes. They look ever so sensible and yet attractive.

  9. XUP: and since all my other shoes are either black or beige, this is a huge exciting departure to have such bright burgundy feet.

  10. Isn't it great when you find a pair of shoes like that? I had a pair which I bought for 60 francs in Calais France, years ago, and basically wore them to death. felt like I was born wearing them. I miss those shoes.

  11. I love foreign grocery stores - so many interesting mew things to try.

  12. I too generally go for online shopping to save money & time. My last purchase was a pair of shoes from Nordstrom.

  13. Beatriz: Welcome! How do you not get overwhelmed with so many choices?!


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