Things I Love: An Ode to Flip-Flops

In my inner movie, my memories of France will be forever punctuated by a very special sound. The roar of motorbikes as they sped between lanes of traffic? The tinkle of glasses and silverware floating out of upper-floor open windows in the sultry July summer? The sound of street and subway musicians pouring their souls out on their instruments? Yes, to all of those. But the sound I will most remember is the flap, flap, flap of my trusty flip-flops as I trudged up and down the Metro staircases and sauntered along hallways in museums. You could almost call it a comfort sound, like the lullaby your mother sings or the feeling you get when hearing a favorite hymn.

And comfortable it was. At the last minute before we left on the trip, I decided to purchase a pair of bejeweled thick-soled flip-flops to use as an antidote to the sturdy shoes I planned to wear during days of sightseeing. As it turned out, that last-minute decision was a life saver.

I wore the flip-flops at Versailles after we got drenched in the rain outside the Petit Trianon.

I wore the flip-flops in the evenings on the cruise ship after my feet and ankles swelled from all the salt in those delectable sauces.

I even wore them the last day in Paris, when that tender place between my toes was broken in and the soft foam sole was all that I could handle after twelve days of sightseeing.

I didn’t take any photos of people’s feet in Paris, but if I had, you would see thousands of flip-flops. All sizes, shapes, and styles, and they weren’t all on tacky American feet. The French wear flip-flops, too, but they are likely to be trendy Havaianas.

NRB gave me “that look” when I suggested we bring home Paris flip-flops as souvenirs, but really, isn’t a good flip-flop the ultimate in thoughtful gift-giving?


6 responses

  1. Sounds your flip-flops were a true life-saver, however they are one thing I’ve not been able to get used to. They just hurt my toes! Can’t wait to see the rest of your photos. These are great!

  2. For me, as far as it is socially acceptable, I would rather be wearing a flip-flop than a pair of shoes. I have been wearing my pair of sandal, the same pair, for the past 5 years and it is still serving me well. I couldn’t have appreciated it more; how comfortable and relax it always makes me feel. And yet, I thought it is very thoughtful souvenir. 🙂

  3. A flip flopped in Paris! Great photos and what a cool trip. I love flip-flops. You definitely should have brought some French ones home. 😀

  4. I’vejust gotten a pairof orthoheel flip flops. They are molded to prevent pronation. We went to DC for Will’s 21st and I wore them all up and down the Mall. Very comfortable.

    1. I saw the cutest pair of fitflops in a magazine — silver with large diamonds on the straps. What brand did you get?

  5. […] I blogged about my trusty flip-flops here. […]

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