Memory Lane Friday is a weekly blog carnival about your memories, to preserve them for your family. All are welcome to link up. This week's topic is new shoes.
I had a hard time picking a story to tell. Should I write about my beloved purple Kangaroos I got when I was seven? They had a tiny zipper pocket to slip a penny into. Or how about my hot pink jelly shoes in 5th grade? And how dirty and smelly they got during the summer?
In the end, I decided to blog about my tall boots. As a kid, when I first started showing hunters, I wore
jodphurs with paddock boots. When you reach a certain age, though, you outgrow your jodphurs and are expected to make the switch to tall boots and breeches. This happened for me around age 13. The formal black boots are expensive, so when another girl at the barn had gotten a little too chunky in the calves for her custom Effinghams, we jumped at the chance to buy them.
And so began weeks of torment for me. Even though Joanna had been riding in the Effinghams, they were still practically new, and not broken in sufficiently. Just getting them on was a nightmare. You use boot pulls, these hooks that tuck inside the boots, to help you pull them on. In addition, I had to use a boot slicking spray, sprayed inside the boot, to help them slide on. They were that tight! Then I also had to use a boot stretch spray. This helped the boots to stretch with wear and use, so that they would conform to my legs.
Here is a picture of me, riding Chico, at one of my early tall boots shows. Note that my foot is not supposed to be turned out that much (although I can't blame the boots - this was one of my 'bad' riding habits):
The first couple of times I rode in these boots, the entire back of my heel peeled off in extreme blistering. They were also slanted, so that it was difficult to walk in them (angled so that they would be ergonomic for riding). Finally, eventually, the Effinghams did at last break in. In retrospect, I think part of it may have been the cut of this particular boot. I outgrew the Effinghams in college and purchased a new pair - didn't have a bit of trouble breaking them in!
If you'd like to participate in Memory Lane Friday, you can grab my button off the sidebar and link up here:
Be sure to go visit others' blogs if you get a chance. Next week does not a have a theme.