My colleague Laura greeted me on this rainy Thursday with a sunny compliment: “I like your boots!” she exclaimed, looking down at my bright-yellow Hunter wellies. See snapshot below (sorry for sideways orientation; why DOES that randomly happen — anyone a tech expert?):
I thanked her for the compliment, feeling a little sheepish. Given that Hunter rain boots retail for $150 and up here in Toronto, while Walmart and Canadian Tire offer much cheaper versions (like, one-tenth the price), it hardly seems like the kind of thing Saving with Sandra should be indulging in. So I stammered and explained that I got a really good deal on them at my fave footwear outlet, The Shoe Company, last Friday. Handily, there’s a location about a seven-minute walk from our office, where many TP staffers have found many a cute shoe. With my $5 off in loyalty-shopper points, I paid about $80. (The website doesn’t offer discounted Hunter wellies; wonder why?)
Still steep, you say? Two weeks ago, I would have agreed. Having seen dozens of moms walking the sidewalks of Toronto in their pricey rain boots, I had mentally vowed that I would never fall “victim” to the trend.
A) I have horrible, terrible, fussy feet, and b) I walk a lot, so comfort is key for me. Listening to forecasts for an extra-wet Canadian spring, I recalled that while on mat leave with Bronwyn, and stroller-walking every day (sometimes several times a day), I bought a cheapo pair of Canadian Tire rubbers — and suffered seeping, painful blisters within the first half hour of wearing them. Plus, they leaked, even on the brief latter occasions when I slipped them on to take out the garbage in the rain or what have you. Despite the practicality of rubber boots — they save your good leather shoes on rainy days, they prevent your work wardrobe from getting soaked, they let you jump in puddles with your kids — I haven’t worn them for years. That’s hardly a bargain.
The day I bought my new yellow Wellies, I wore them home in the pouring rain, then to ballet with Bronwyn. During her class, I had to walk 15 minutes to Indigo to buy a birthday gift for one of Izzy’s little friends, and 15 minutes back to class. My feet felt great.
Oh, and it gets better. When I went to recycle the box they came in the next day, I read that my new boots have a 12-month warranty, and unless I do something horrible to them (dip in acid, say), they should last a lifetime.
Now those, I believe, are feats (har har) worth paying a bit extra for.