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This is why I stay out of the shops

I ventured into a shopping centre to buy some thick tights. The leg brace has pulled holes in my two pairs. I could have waited until next winter but I wanted to take two pairs to France to wear with skirts and my boots.

I only like the Italian brand, not the cheap Chinese copies that are not as smooth and silky, not as long lived. The Italian brand are about $24 each.

I went to a larger shopping centre, not my normal small, local centre as I also wanted to check out flat dressy shoes for work. I won’t be wearing high heels again this year and I can’t wear my boots for many of my work outfits. I had already looked in my local centre and they didn’t have anything that appealed to me.

I ran into a neighbour who works in my preferred department store. She offered to use her staff discount.

All this is a long-winded preface to say, needless to say, I didn’t just buy stockings.

Three tops; three pairs of shoes; a scarf; a pair of jeggings and two pairs of tights.

I might availed myself of some discounts but thank god I have been saving money; I can cover this splurge. Yet all my principles of sourcing socially and environmentally just clothing went out the window. Opps.

Here’s a peak at what I bought, minus the scarf and pants.

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I’ve been dressing like a man

I've been wearing the same pair of boots for three weeks. Usually I wear different shoes for different outfits. I do have several pairs, OK lots of pairs, of "work shoes", shoes with a slight heel, shoes with a high heel, shoes in different colours, that I only wear at work. And then there's all the flats and sandals and runners and heels I wear when not at work.

But while I have to wear my leg brace, I need shoes with support, that are comfortable, that stay on firmly, that don't have a heel.

So, no court shoes. Nothing with a kitten or small heel. Nothing with straps. No ballet flats.

These fit the bill.

The leg brace limits my clothing choice as much as footwear choice. I have to wear something that fits under or over the brace. The brace also catches on clothing and pulls threads. I don't want to wreck all my clothes so I can't wear them all.

The boots also limit clothing choice. Black tights and boots require a certain look. So no pretty and floral clothing.

Do you know what?

I haven't missed swapping shoes and clothes. It has been freeing; thinking what to wear has been simple. I rotate between two skirts and one pair of leggings. No thinking. No clothing dilemmas. No "what to wear" thoughts in the morning. No finding the right top for the desired skirt.

I know I will enjoy wearing my other clothes when I can again. But I will miss the excuse the brace gives me to wear the same three items over and over again.

A bonus: normally I wear these boots with jeans, so they are never really seen. Now with skirts, they've truely been admired. I've been asked where I bought them.

London. They were the only thing I liked and could afford at Liberties.

PS. People have questioned why I'm wearing heels. The boots don't feel like high heels to me. The heel is solid and large, and compared to my normal work shoes, don't feel high. Also I need to bend my bodgy leg so the heel takes the pressure off the ball of my foot.

Rainforest 

There’s a primordial power, majesty and spookiness about rainforests. 

The trees are so tall and so straight. I’m in awe of their age. 

Photos of trees often don’t give you the sense of the size. But how about this one with cars and Mr S for perspective?


Mr S and I went for a walk on a skywalk, a structure that takes you into the canopy. You could see through the grate to the ground. The skywalk swayed but not as much as the cantilevered one that looked down on the creek. 

In the photo below the centre tree is growing on a small rock in the creek! How can it be supported with such a small root base? It’s like it is balancing on a ball. Can you see the base right down the bottom middle of the photo? The second photo gives a closer view of the tree balancing on a ball! 


A second walk through another section of rainforest was in order. I love the shapes of the strangler figs, the strange growth on trees, the burnt out sections of trees and the enormity of trees. 

The roots formed a natural sand pit or wading pool

The roots always seem too shallow to support a massive tree


I was on the hunt to see a platypus in the wild. The sign said the area was restricted to protect the platypuses. But obviously platypuses don’t read and didn’t know they were meant to be there. We saw none in the waterhole even though it was just before sunset. 


Let me tell you, a rainforest at dusk is a spooky place. The rustling in the lead cover by unseen things, the strange squawking. We hightailed it out before it was totally dark and headed to view the sunset over the caldera.   


It’s a magical place. The rich volcanic soil (that you can see in the photos with the horses) makes the mountain perfect for gardeners. My mother’s garden grows wild in a tame way. (Wish my garden would grow the tame way! Lol) 


It’s a perfect spot to read, and snooze, and day dream, and chat, and mindlessly surf the Internet, and watch the birds in and around the bird feeder. It’s strange how quickly the days pass when you are relaxing and going at a much slower pace

(Oh and apropos of nothing to do with rainforests, I bought some Queensland-y clothes. Bright and light and colourful. As two items had tiny holes in them, I got them free!!! Apologies for my poor styling. I do these clothes no justice. The one with the pink fringe is a shawl-like open cloak-y thing. So unlike me. But I will waft around wearing it. The sequinned top is so me. I know, I know. I am meant to be decluttering and saving for my year off and my travel and my renos.)

Comfy shoes

I have thrown out a pair of shoes. 

I bought them three summers ago. They were my first foray into “leisure shoes”. 

Mr S hated my new leisure shoes from the start. He thought they looked ugly and did nothing for my legs. I admit I normally wear something more structured and with a heel. If I am in walking shoes I tend go wear runners. Still these were so comfortable and I was in them non-stop through three summers.

(Yes, they were the start of my move into “comfortable shoes”, a sign of aging and an insult. Mr S says that about ugly shoes, “They must be comfortable”. Implication for those who don’t get it, “because you wouldn’t wear them for any other reason.”)

But they started dying. First the inside of the heel went. I persevered. Then the sole started separating from the top in different spots. Then the sole was nearly worn through. Then they stretched. And the last sraw: the inside became quite dirty. 

But never fear. I have another pair. A friend bought a very similar pair on my recommendation. While she was amazed I would take to leisure shoes (it was she who coined the phrase, as she normally wears such shoes.) she didn’t like my recommended pair. So passed them onto me. 

Quite handy having a friend with the same size foot.

We fade to grey

I have a higher standard of “worn out” for items that are worn in public than for those I wear at home, and under the covers of my bed sheets. I’m sure you’re happy to read that, considering my last post. 

I just popped this coat in the op shop bag. 


I really like it and am sad it no longer meets my standards. I’ve tried to ignore that the white is not white. It has become grey from washing with the black. Poor dying chemicals? Anyway without the crisp contrast, I just feel schlompy. Others mightn’t notice it. But there you go. I do. 

I’ve put it on several times, felt not quite right and put it back in the wardrobe for another time, telling myself I am just being picky. Each time has been the same. It’s good. Just not good enough. 

(And the lining is slightly ripped along the back seam. But that wouldn’t bother me, cause it doesn’t affect the wearing or look.)

It’s not like I am going to be cold. I have a thing for coats. Five or six or so more in my wardrobe. But you see, each is unique and each one fits a purpose, fits different outfits. 

Goodbye my zebra like coat. I hope you make someone else happy. 

Do you have a thing about the whiteness of white?

Wearing in or wearing out

Do you like how soft old cotton pyjamas get? 

When they’ve been washed many, many times. When the threads, the weft and warp, have loosened. When the elastic is shot. When the material is thin. 

It’s how I prefer my pyjamas. Except I usually wear old tshirts, track pants and shorts as night attire when they’ve passed their prime as indoor around-the-house wear, which comes after they’ve past the wearable-in-public stage. 

In my defence, it is not just a tight arse thing. I find it difficult to find pyjamas that are comfortable. I don’t like buttons, or frills, or hard seams. Anything that is going to rub or itch. I don’t like neck lines too high but in winter I have to have my neck and back covered so can’t stand wide open neck lines. I can’t stand tight waists. Slinky material leaves me feeling cold and staticky. I can’t have just any cotton. It has to be knitted, stretchy material not woven material which stays cold to the touch. 

So old clothes work best for me. The line between comfy and rag-like does become fuzzy. 

For pyjamas, I don’t see holes in knees or neck lines. I can ignore seams that slightly come apart in the crutch. But I have standards, damn it. 

When the elastic totally goes and pants fall as I walk, they go. When holes appear in the backside or the ones in the crutch are too big to be decent, the clothing goes. 

I just let go of a pair of shorts that have been doing duty as PJ shorts. They’ve had a long life and I’ve definitely had value for money. Too many holes in the bottom now.
I am sad. I know it will be many years before I find a similar pair of shorts and wear them into a comfy state. 

The But wait, there’s more shoe post. 

Black boots, brown boots, flat boots, gum boots. I feel like Dr Seuss. One fish, two fish, red fish, blue fish.

  
  
  

Gum boots? Really? Yes. And I have another pair at work for schtomping around in the wet. Herein lies a warning to subscribing to emails from alleged discount online retailers. I was sucked in by the promoted discount. Sucked in also by that these were Italian gum boots. And then I wanted Hunter ones. Really? When I’ve worn these, maybe once. Luckily I stopped myself. (But this is meant to be an audit, not a didactic opportunity.)

  
Flat leather boots. Boring but a staple. 

  
Stretchy boots. Bought on advice, not personally  mind, of Trinny and Suzannah. But the heels are not balanced which is crucial in high heeded shoes so your feet don’t wobble and you don’t twist your ankle or fall. I fear with cheap Chinese made foot wear, and I don’t mean to piss off millions of the human race, good design has been lost in the race to cheaper, faster production by millions of peasants. I really should have thrown these away. But I might give them a go next winter. 
  
Blsck ankle boots of varying designs. Yawn. But classic. 

  
Gorgeous. Cute. But uncomfortable. And a tad smelly in a plastically way. 

  
Well worn, read as comfortable, flattish with tiny kitten heel, sling back shoes.

  
God. I know, unbelievable. I have “leisure shoes”. But as my husband would say, “They must be comfortable,”meaning you wouldn’t wear them otherwise. And they are. 

  
Do I have to count these individually? All but one pair are from hotel stays. The one in bag is a souvenir of Buck Palace. Not of my visit when I received my investiture (haven’t I posts about this?). Yeah, OK, just joshing. Just your run of the mill souvenir from the shop.

  
I’m an Aussie. Of course I have a pair of uggies. I wear these as slippers. Uggboot Rule Number 1: do not wear these outside the home. 

  
My God. What is this mess? Two pairs of slippers. The red ones are like socks and the others are lambs wool, so like uggies without a sole. Both can only be worn inside and neither were worn this winter. Might give them one more winter and then toss them. I don’t really need them, not with ugh boots and hotel slippers. 

  
If I have uggies, of course I have thongs. The crocs in the front are so comfortable. If only I could find the same design but crocs have changed their style. I could walk for hours in these. The Haviannas are horrid. My feet slip around in them. I might have another pair of these somewhere in the house. Really they are crap. I know some people swear by Haviannas but I hate them. Keep them for emergencies like using communal showers and washing my own shower with bleach. (Hate bleach on my skin.)

  
My current joggers. They were outside when I took yesterday’s photos as they had to dry off after a walk when I had to cross a creek by just walking through it. And why keep two old pairs when I have this pair. No idea. Just in case. 

I think this is it. I don’t think any are hiding elsewhere, except the gum boots I leave at work. But I cannot be 100% sure. 

I am not counting the hotel slippers individually. So today’s total is: 20 bringing the grand total to 53. 

That’s not too bad, is it? What do you think?

And numbers aside, which of my shoes is your favourite?