Last week my friend Asmita Deshpande visited us in Mumbai from Neemuch, MP.
So, what was so special about her visit?
Her single statement added feather to her visit.
After dinner, she wanted to go for a stroll. As she was to travel, she had come wearing her comfy shoes, which she didn’t want to wear now for a stroll. Fair enough, but my feet are very small so my slippers were of no use, I proposed to her, “wear my husband’s Bata Chappals.” She reluctantly agreed, but after walking few steps, she said, “These are so comfortable.” She added, “Footwear for men is so comfortable, whereas for women, footwear is only fashionable and uncomfortable. Why women succumb to such torture.”
She is blessed with good height so she doesn’t know the pain of short girls.
It was a simple remark and not her trademark “feminist remark” but yes why only girls need to look Taller? Whiter? Slimmer?
Unfortunately, I was one of those…
My life as a short girl was all about wearing high heels (not conventionally high, but not flats either) most of the time, be it in college, office, social or official outing. It was a pain to select a proper heel that was comfortable, sturdy, stylish and didn’t pain my feet, if worn for longer hours, sarvagunn sampan!
I was sharply focussed on buying such footwear and spent years scouting for such footwear in New Delhi’s Janpath, Connaught Place, Sarojini Nagar, Kamla Nagar, Lajpat Nagar…I had assorted a battalion of footwear. Do they made me look taller or brought drastic change to my five feet nothing frame? No, I don’t think so now. But in those days good footwear which made me look taller was a prized catch.
What to say when some Ladkawalas were coming to see me? My big focus was on footwear over anything relevant for matrimony. A ‘matter’ of few inches over my ‘grey matter.’
After elaborate arrangements of their hospitality and our hopes, the next morning message use to come, “Ladki ki height thodi kum hai, sorry.” Why you should be sorry? God should be sorry for creating tall people like you. After nth rejections, 90% over height and 10% over the complexion, I met my husband who is over 6 feet tall and married me for who I was as a person. On the day of my marriage, I decided to wear the highest heel, so that I didn’t have to throw Jaimaal around 6 feet tall gentlemen’s neck.
Cut to footwear, I came to know about Liberty Footwear’s grand showroom in Connaught Place, and could not resist my visit there. The showroom was grand, and I could lay my hands on a piece that was just right for me (Cinderella moment). I had found my match and stuck to it for years.
Time passed and my passion for heels started waning, I decided to go for comfortable footwear, which enhanced my personality, not necessarily added few inches to my height. Still, the keeda of wearing heels kept bugging me. I use to travel for work in the locals, wearing my floaters or Athleisure and use to change into heels as soon as I entered the office. I never attended any meeting, discussion or regular office without my heels. I use to climb stairs in a jiffy with my heels and everybody use to marvel – how? Practice makes a woman perfect.
For the last few years, I have not worn heals at all. Why? I am no longer conscious of my height; I want to be comfortable and not irritated because of those artificial extra inches. How I achieved that? That’s another story…
I saw a photo of Aishwarya Rai wearing particular footwear which was not flat, stylish, sturdy and comfortable. Now, the frantic search began for that footwear, and finally, I could lay my hands, oops feet on that. Not to say of the bomb I paid for those. Now, I wear only these…
Thanks, Aishwarya for taking the Achilles heel out of my life!