Vintage Threads

Mother Venting wants to know the stories behind our oldest items of clothing and the tag has come to me twice now – from  A Hell of a Woman and From Fun to Mum – which is lovely because it makes me feel all popular, but also that I’d better get on and write something!

I’d love to share a piece of beautiful vintage couture with you, or perhaps something that has been handed down by my mum, from when she was at the Isle of Wight Festival watching Jimi Hendrix. Alas, I have neither. I do, however, have the programme for that festival, but that’s another story.

My oldest, most favourite item of clothing is actually footwear. I can have footwear, right? Good.

I present to you the oldest hightops in town…

Best Shoes Ever.

I bought this pair of Converse nearly twenty years ago. These days I have to wear them rather sparingly. They’re falling apart for one reason, and also, to be honest, they’re really bad for my poor plantar fasciitis suffering feet. But I LOVE them. I love them so much that I cannot buy another, replacement pair because then I would be betraying these ones. Which I admit is a little potty, and doesn’t stop me buying other shoes. Just not Converse high-tops…
They’ve been with me round the world and shared many of my adventures, from wandering around Paris,my favourite city in the world, to being chased by a macaque monkey out of the Batu Caves in Malaysia. Now, I’m a big fan of monkeys and apes. They are after all, our closest relatives, and for family, we treat them prettily shoddily. Don’t even get me started on the poor Orangutan (my favourite ape, and one on the utter verge of extinction) Despite this, it is safe to say that this particular macaque is not on my Christmas card list. The bloody thing was HUGE and was staring at me for ages before running at me with bared teeth. Macaque monkeys have BIG teeth. The reason for this, I found out, having reversed at speed down what amounted to a cliff edge, was that well-meaning (read: idiotic) tourists, had been turning up with loads of food in their bags to feed to the monkeys. Who, considering that they ate all the food offerings left at the Temple, really, really didn’t need half a loaf of bread too, and had taken to attacking people, thinking that they were carrying goodies. Thank goodness my trusty Converse saved me from the sugar-crazed monkey. Even if I looked like an idiot doing a runner. I’m exaggerating about the cliff edge by the way. There were steps. It’s the embarrassment…

Not this actual monkey...his GIANT brother

My podiatrist and physiotherapist do not love my Converse, and I see them shaking their heads when I turn up for appointments wearing them, so much so, that these days I wear my trail-running trainers instead to get the doctor brownie points. However, I will not be throwing them away, even if I cannot wear them as much these days. It’d be like throwing away an old friend and it ain’t gonna happen. Once they’ve finally collapsed, I will let them live with me in retirement forever…
I’m going to tag Minibreak Mummy for this now, because she’s a bit of a magpie so I think she’ll have something great to share. Plus, I love her writing.
PS – If you want to help save the Orang-Utan, please visit The Orangutan Foundation. I realise that this started off with shoes and ended up with primates, but there you go. I cannot help the way my brain works…
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9 Responses to “Vintage Threads”

  1. Yes of course you can have footwear! What a fab choice!
    And thank you for your kind words. Will probably do my post at the weekend.
    Ruth @ Minibreak Mummy

  2. Do you think once they’re unwearable you’ll be able to buy another pair? or do you think you’d still end up feeling guilty for replacing them? You’re kind of reminding me of Christopher Robin except your Pooh bear is converse hightops. That’s how much I can feel the love for your shoes through your post 😉

    It’s ‘funny’ you should mention monkeys though because I watched Rise of the Planet of the Apes last night and it made me feel very sad about how primates are treated. I know it’s just a film but I wonder if man’s actions would change if we knew carrying on down the same road would result in our own enslavement? It’s sad to think that a species being on the verge of extinction isn’t enough for everyone to step back and say hold on, let’s sort this out.

    • I may be able to buy another, once they’re really retired. Makes me a bit sad though. I have a teddy bear from childhood who sits on my bed, so I have an actual Pooh bear as well as a shoe Pooh bear. Oh, I have no idea where this is going…

      I haven’t seen that film but I can imagine it, having seen a few trailers. I think we would carry on regardless. We think of ourselves not only as invincible but as separate from, rather than a part of, nature as a whole. It’s why we don’t appreciate it has worth for its own intrinsic value, rather than for what it can give us. And, yes, that includes all other animals, regardless. Get yourself joined up to one of the myriad of charities out there who are trying to help – they quite often ask you to do work for them online, instead of giving cash. Might make you feel better about it! x

  3. Wow, you run away from monkeys in Converse shoes? I am impressed! I have a few but they surely aren’t running material, well done you for outpacing the monkeys. I so totally understand your point about physiotherapist too. I have injured my back in Dec and every time I see mine I wear running shoes that I never ever wear. Once I had some very cute Prada ballerina on and I was given such a lecture about how bad they were! needless to say, i still wear them all the time, but that’s just me, vapid person for whom looks do matter, don’t these physios understand? :-0

  4. Nice post. I learn something new and challenging on blogs I stumbleupon every day.
    It will always be interesting to read content from other authors and practice a little something from other sites.

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