The Boots

We both wanted to buy real hiking boots before we departed the U.S. for this journey.

The task slipped down the To Do list until we found ourselves at REI a day or two before we flew out, sitting in the shoe department surrounded by towers of shoe boxes.

I’ve never spent as much time in my life on a shoe purchase as on those boots.

I’m a guy shopper: know what you want, stride in, locate the target, acquire, and exit.

In a complete reversal of roles, my wife made her decision within about 40 minutes. For the boot purchase, I worked my way through two tortured shifts of kids in the Escondido REI shoe department.

My quandary was, the pair I was starting to favor after the first couple of hours were the same brand she had chosen. I struggled mightily to avoid picking the same brand as my wife was happily hopping about the store wearing. I considered it the first step down the slippery slope that results in matching jogging suits and a yappy lap dog.

But, in the end, they won out: Vasque.

I’ve only purchased three pairs of boots in my life that were immediately comfortable: a pair of Italian street riding boots, a pair of MSR motocross boots (made by Alpinestar) and these Vasque hiking boots.

A month or so into our South America trip I wore them around for a couple of days and then immediately took them on a five hour hike. Dumb, but somehow I got lucky.

They are comfortable, durable, and lightweight. I’ve been wearing them every day since then.


(Thanks to Brett Barton for prompting this post)