Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Shoe woes

I was a bit miffed to discover last week that some stitching had come undone on my favourite pair of shoes. It was nothing major - in fact it's purely decorative stitching - but still, you don't particularly want loose stitching to be on show if you find your self attending a social function (not that I am, but I do like to be prepared).

So, on this, the odious first day back at work after my extended Christmas break, I dropped my beloved shoe into a plastic bag and resolved to pop into a reasonably well know chain of high street shops who do shoe repairs. I shan't name them (*cough, cough: AHEM*) but I'm sure you know who I mean.

I've actually only had one experience dealing with this shop before, and it wasn't exactly an encouraging one; a couple of months back the sole of one of my awesome boots began to come away (evidently it was made in a sweatshop where the pre-teen workforce was equipped only with a spent pritt-stick and a complete disregard for the task at hand), so I scurried along thinking I could get it resoled, or simply repaired. Handing my boot to the chap behind the counter I was dismayed to see him pull the sole further away from the leather, before handing it back to me and saying "ah, you just want to dab a bit of super glue in there - that'll do the trick."

I couldn't help but feel like it was the equivalent of me taking a pair of smart trousers to a tailer and being told to hem the legs with a stapler.

Still, with the stitching coming undone on my shoe, I could see no other option but to return to this particular shop, where I was sure they'd say something along the lines of "yeah, we can sort that for you." Upon arrival, I once again handed one of my favourite items of footwear to the grubby assistant. He looked at it a bit like an orangutan looks at a banana he's chewed and then regurgitated into his hand.

"Yeah, see, it's not actually coming apart - it's just fancy stitching, like."

"OK," I said. "But you can repair it, yes?"

He handed the shoe back to me. "Nah, what you wanna do is just run a lighter along it mate - that'll sort it out."

Yes, he advised me to TORCH MY SHOE with a disposable lighter like it was a crack pipe.

I subsequently dropped my shoe back in the bag and stormed off. Then, purely by coincidence, on the walk back to the office I discovered that a local independent dry cleaners does shoe repairs. I explained the problem to the lady and she said "yeah, we can do that. How does seven pounds sound?"

I pick it up Thursday.


Several hours later I undertook a particularly fruitless expedition to Westfield in an attempt to buy a) a new wallet as mine's falling apart, b) a t-shirt I'd seen that I liked, and c) a new pair of tracksuit bottoms that are sweat-proof, have zipped pockets, and non-elasticated ankles. Apparently none of these things exist in Westfield, so I decided WHAT THE HELL! I'd treat myself to a new pair of boots I'd previously seen and tried on last week.

When I tried them last week I was a bit concerned that my regular shoe size was a bit on the large side (as they're slip-on boots), so I asked the delightful assistant if she could get me the next size down. She returned a short while later only to inform me they didn't have the next size down, but they did have the one below that. I scrunched my face up and said something along the lines of "I like the flow of blood to my toes, thanks."

Then she said "oh, but we've got this in all sizes."

I looked at her condescendingly and replied "Yes, but that's a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT TYPE OF SHOE."

At which point she looked at the shoe in her hand as if seeing it for the first time and said "oh, yeah…"


CyberPete said...

Clearly you are an Imelda Marcos. I love it!

Just don't get Carrie'd away (see what I did there, geddit?! A sex and the city reference. I'm so clever)

Tara said...

That so-called shoe repair shop is either trying to save you money by providing some DIY tips for you, or the assistants are way too lazy to put effort into customer service. I'm leaning heavily towards the second option.

Inexplicable DeVice said...

I think they should just stick to the key cutting.
Have they cut any of yours lately?

* rummages behind counter to check for master key for Sparky Towers *

Tim said...

Cyberpete - I'm not an Imelda! I don't have that many pairs - I just appreciate a nice shoe!

Tara - I'm leaning the same way.

Inexplicable Device - No!