My shoes are always made for walking, especially because walking is for the moment the only sport I practice constantly for years and most likely will continue to practice in the next years too. When I travel, I always wear skirts and I try to be modestly fashionable, but the choice of shoes that can be both practical and good looking is not an easy task.
Most part of the time, I have a very practical, brown looking pair of sport shoes that even though they do not look as the perfect accessory for a lady, never betrayed me and made me always feel like flying, regardless of how much hiking I added on my speed board. For my England and Wales trip, I decided that I need some good looking outfits and thus left my ugly brown sport shoes at home. I was expecting some nice hills and hiking temptations, especially in Llandrindod Wells, but was not sure that I will have to follow the wild call for jumping around trees on unbeaten paths.
However, I was pleasantly surprised to be announced that a little bit of hiking is part of the daily schedule. Only one single problem was left: my delicate shoes were not ready for such a challenge. Without too many generous choices for shopping in Llandrindod, after a couple of searches – not too many – and 3 visits at the same shop in less than 2 hours, I decided to buy the black pair of Clarks shoes. The knowledgeable Brit heartily recommended it twice: ‘Clarks is always good quality’ and convinced also by a substantial sale that day, I bought them. Their prices are generally middle to high, but as usually, wearing branded products has an additional cost.
First of all, they look much better than any pair of walking shoes I had in the last 3 years. They go quite well with my long skirts and can match all the possible colour combinations. The small backpack I usually carry with me when on the road has some shades of grey, they go very well together. At the first sight, the sole looks very sophisticated and it suits adequately long walks on roads with cobblestones and stones of different sizes.
The leather is quite hard and at least for the first walks expect some resistance and some corns. Especially if you want to wear them with wool socks: if you bought exactly your number, you will have a lot of problems so better chose at least half and one number more.
One week ago, I wandered in Bad Saarow for a couple of hours, including through some fields freshly wet by the morning rain. The unpleasant surprise was to discover that the water insinuated through the small holes from the upper front. I had to cope with the wet socks for another couple of hours, a situation that my previous ugly shoes protected me from. In other words, my Clarks are a good choice for the sunny and not-rainy long days, but when the weather forecast announces intensive rains, my old brown friends will go back on the road. It is always good to have two available pairs of walking shoes, especially if you are a travel addict.