Thursday, August 12, 2010

Road kill

I've never owned a car or motorized vehicle of any sort, but from what I hear about them, I am kind of glad to be living in Tokyo with the web of trains connecting all points in the city: the money I would pay in insurance and up-keep can be used for clothing and footwear, and I only have to rely on my legs and the trains to get me from point A to B. This has now been tested. Again.

I thought the first time my heel snapped off and I had to quite literally hop to the cobbler where I was given a pair of ugly Office Lady shoes to wear to work while he fixed them was horrific enough. Apparently not.

The shoe gods put me in my place once again at the exact moment I crossed the main Shibuya intersection. I could feel something strange going on down there but as in the first stage of grief, was in denial that anything was happening. That didn't make the problem go away so I stopped and inspected the damage - the cork wedge heel was starting to come unstuck from the rest of the shoe, threatening to turn it into a flat. I decided there was no time for triage and that if I walked carefully and with purpose, it would remain stuck on. For about five steps.

The next thing I recall was feeling the ground flat beneath my foot and looking back, only to find the carnage laying a few feet behind me. I tried to do the whole picking-up-the-heel-of-my-shoe-that-just-fell-off-is-soooo-natural thing and quickly tucked it into my bag like a dirty tampon. I then did the whole walking-with-one-shoe-that-is-three-inches-higher-than-the-other-is-soooo-natural thing down Center Gai, which would have been par for the course post-Pure at 5am six years ago but not so much today. Luckily my shoe decided to commit suicide in Shibuya, where there are many a store selling cheap shoes, instead of Ginza, where I would have been one fucked puppy indeed.

I ended up with a ghetto pair of flip flops that are vastly inferior to cherry red wedges, but thankfully the wonderful and totally not Generic Jen B did not bat an eye at them, for which I will be eternally grateful. There isn't much of a moral to this story, but you can be sure I no longer trust my shoes to get me across the city and might have to consider a permanent space for a pair of plan B shoes inside my purse, because you know this shit is going down again some day.


Tokyo Cowgirl said...


A similar thing happened to me last month on Sixth Street... my flip flop broke in Midtown at 6pm, I literally had to hop to the nearest store and buy the first pair of Havaianas I could find.

Ashley said...

Just stumbled across your blog and glad I did - love your humor (especially as a fellow Japan resident). :D

Green-Eyed Geisha said...

Cowgirl: I almost bought Havaianas too but being ghetto, bought the cheapest pair of flip flops I could find ;)

Ashley: thanks for stopping by! Us ladies need to stick together?!?! That pavement is unforgiving!!

Generic Jen B said...

Very, very impressive shoe destruction there; you ride them hard don't you! You still looked chic in your flops tho', it barely registered in my mind that you had suffered a sartorial disaster. I suppose grace is natural to some (teach me!).

Julie Lavoie said...


As always, interesting post!

That's happened to me before, except I was *already* wearing crappy flip-flops and then one of them broke. Oh, and one time I was on a boat on the Mekong river, and someone accidently pushed one of my shoe into the river, floating away never to be seen again. I had to bike back home with one shoe!

Oh, I just wanted to mention that I included you in my roundup of "favorite blogs about living in Asia"! :-)

Green-Eyed Geisha said...

Jen B: I try, I try. I think the epitomy of grace is kindly glossing over the sartorial disasters of others :)

Julie: I don't think I would do well stranded on a river then bike with only one shoe! Thank you for the shout out on your blog! I am actually working on a small list of non-Japanese expat blogs that I want to put up, so I hope you don't mind if I include yours.