Monday, October 26, 2009

Boots! Glorious, boots!

I've been cursed when it comes to boots. At least since I've moved to Chicago.

This sucks for a lot of reasons, primarily because in Chicago good boots are about as important as breathing. Think I'm exaggerating? You try to have cold wet feet for six months out of the year and see how full of sunshine you are!

When I moved here three years ago, my coworkers got me a $150 giftcard to Northface as a going away present. My first few days in town, I hit up the store and plopped down $175 on the sturdiest pair of boots I could fine. I tried them on. Tromped around the store and left the store 20 minutes later, boots in hand.

Stupid. Stupid. Extra stupid.

The neophite that I was never factored in the fact that I would have to haul my ass to the train, a half mile away. And back. And then all around downtown. In the heaviest boots on the planet. After about 20 minutes in the things, which had style only Neil Armstrong could appreciate, my feet started to fall asleep. My shins hurt from the walking. Driving was terrifying since I could barely bend my ankle. And eventually, one of the grommets popped off. (Note missing grommet and note that these are in my To Be Donated pile.)

The next winter, I bought a pair of fake Uggs. They were warm and snuggly, but that may be their only redeeming quality. Uggs _ real or faux _ were apparently never made to be worn in snow since they were a) not waterproof and b) lacked the proper traction to keep me upright in the snow and keep my ass bruise free.

I shelved the Fuggs (get it? Faux Uggs?) and picked up a pair of fleece-lined golashes at Target. They were warm enough with thick socks and I could walk in them _ once I got calluses over the blisters they caused. They lasted until March when they sprung a leak after the heel seperated from the sole. I even tried my hiking boots. They were great on the snow, but I had to walk with my arms way out to the sides for balance every time I hit the marble floors of my office or condo (Alas, I'm not so much with the grace.)

Two winters. Three pairs of ineffective boots. Lots of money wasted. And lots of time wasted, too. (Without a backyard, taking a dog on a walk three times a day is NO FUN when you have to stop and lace up your boots and unlace them every time.)

That's why this fall, I became a woman possessed. I researched. I measured. I hopped, stomped, bounced, and read reviews. And I'm happy to report that I am typing this wearing my new-and-fabulous winter boots.

They're lightweight, but warm. They can tough out temperatures of -40. They fit my calves. They feel like sneakers. They come to a few inches below my knee, perfect for the snow drifts here. I'm pretty convinced I can walk for miles in them. And they are going to KICK WINTER'S ASS. Hear that Mother Nature? Me and my boots? They're made for walking. And, honest to God, if I have to buy another pair of snow boots in the next decade, I'm throwing something.

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