Hmm, on second thoughts, perhaps I'll just carry my own hip-flask (filled with whisky, rather than brandy) to use in such an emergency, and send the doctor on his way...
I make no secret of the fact that I Love Shoes. I have a healthy collection of footwear (some people would say it is so healthy that it could do with being struck by a pandemic and shrinking to half the size. But they would be wrong. Or at least mean-spirited). Boots - both ankle and knee-length - form an important part of this section of my wardrobe. I generally get through at least a couple of pairs every winter, I wear them so much - with dresses, over jeans. Now, normally, buying a new pair of boots would be a joyous event for me. I love going through the different styles, trying to find something a bit different - this past year my favourite pair were some lovely high heeled black ruched leather ones with little buttons all down the side: rather Victoriana inspired. Sadly the Oxford cobbles (you can tell this city was built for men) have done their worst and I rather doubt that the boots will live to see another winter.
Today, however, I had to buy boots of a rather different kind. In just over a week, I am going on a trip that will take me out of my comfort zone, going to stay for ten days in a chalet in the French Alps somewhere near Mont Blanc (there will be a lot more about this nearer the time!). As I have practically zilch in the way of Practical Clothing, this has entailed some major shopping. This afternoon, came The Walking Boots.
Not quite my usual look, but hopefully they'll stop me skidding down the mountain tracks... Although, according to the Rules of Alpine Life as gleaned from Elinor M. Brent-Dyer's Chalet School books (which I read avidly at a very impressionable age) a minor accident is actually to be encouraged, as it allows the handsome doctor who just happens to be hiking nearby at the time to rush over with some brandy and a supportive arm - from which it is but a short step to marriage, eleven children, and a dog.
And even if I do find my footwear at the chalet rather boring, I can always remember these words from Sir W, which come from the 1600 essay, 'Of Censuring':
'I hate the dulnesse of my owne feete, and my horses, when I trauel, and cherish the nimblenesse of my thoughtes, which can flie ouer the world in an afternoone.'