On the whole, I battle to find this type of thing here in Cape Town, and so, in the past I’ve gone to great lengths (some expensive, some painful) to indulge my love of wood-soled buckled shoes. So one of my goals on our recent trip to the US was to bring back the perfect pair. Sounds like an easy task, right?
Well, I trawled through Soho in NYC for days, trying on shoes, most of which didn’t really tick the boxes at all. I roamed the stores in San Francisco, both vintage and modern, and I peered wistfully, but fruitlessly, at racks of shoes in Portland, all to no avail, returning to Cape Town last Friday with the same shoes I’d left in. All in all, on the shoe front, it was a rather ‘meh’ experience.
Sunday morning in Cape Town dawned, and in an attempt to shake off my jetlag, I went to the Waterfront to find new yoga clothes. I popped in to Country Road and… O M G!
Of course, I’m thrilled to have new shoes, and double thrilled that I didn’t have to lug them around the US with me, but what triple thrills me is that I found these in my own back yard! And this experience leads me onto a preachy path, I’m afraid:
Shoe buying and national self-esteem may appear to have little in common, but in fact this experience resonated with something that my recent trip brought home to me, and that I really think all South Africans need to wake up to. In short:
WE ARE FANTASTIC
THE WAY WE DO THINGS IS FAB & INTERESTING
WE NEED TO STOP THINKING WE’RE CRAP, COS WE’RE NOT!
Now, I could witter on in this vein for a while, talking about how our nations’ self-esteem is vulnerable due to our erstwhile status as global pariah, our geographic situation and our multiple cultural identities, but an article about adverts tweeted by Lauren Beukes last evening cuts to the chase rather nicely, so let’s leave it at this: Local readers of this blog, please make this article required weekend reading , and then start, like I have, to realise that despite what we seem to like to believe about ourselves, sjoe! We’re actually doing a bloody good job of things down here.