There are commuting shoes and then there are the shoes that you change into when you get to work.
Australians wear thongs on public transport. New Yorkers traditionally wore sneakers. Me? I wear heels. Always have and I thought that I always would.
I started a new job. The upside is that I no longer have to travel to the city on public transport. The downside is that there is no public transport directly to where I work. It is a 50 minute walk from my house to where I work. A long enough walk to make me anxious internally the night before I work. An added complication is that the Minx is in pre-school in two separate places – one place (Mondays and Tuesdays) is 5 minutes walk from our house and doesn’t open until 8.00 am. I start work, supposedly at 8 am on a Tuesday. The other place (Wednesdays to Fridays) is 45 minutes walk away from our house and opens at 7.30 am.
This commute is, as you can see, already fraught with difficulty due to the need to work around childcare arrangements.
We have a useful website here in Sydney for planning one’s commute 131500.com – simply key in where you are travelling from and where you are going to figure out the best commuting route. According to this site the shortest travel time available from my home to my new workplace is 44 minutes and my commute involves the following steps:
1. Walk to my local train station from the Noisy Boy’s out of school hours care facility (opens at 7.00 am) with the Minx in a stroller (Time Taken – 15 minutes)
2. Get on a train and travel one stop (Cost $4.00; Time Taken – 7 minutes)
3. Get off train. Try to avoid any shops with anything that the Minx might want to eat anything out of (impossible). (Time – about 5 minutes)
4. Walk to my destination (Time – about 15 minutes)
Total Travel Time Time: 42 minutes
Total Travel Cost: $4.00
Or alternatively I can walk from my house to work – total travel time 50 minutes, total travel cost + Number of shops walked past selling anything the Minx might want to eat = NIL.
Last Tuesday I cycled to work for the first time EVER. It rocked even though I shoogled a lot more than a serious cyclist should. I also dismounted and crossed roads at pedestrian crossings a LOT. When I got to work I changed into a pair of Urban Sole shoe boots which are virtually impossible to get onto my feet.
They do look rather nice and spiky but I am pleased that I didn’t choose to cycle in them.
The following days commuting shoes were a bit more smelly – I have figured out that if I trot and walk and trot I can reduce my walk from 50 minutes to about 35 minutes.
When I got to work only 12 minutes late (set the alarm 15 minutes earlier I told myself repeatedly en route) I was sweating like a laundry worker. My face was red. My backside hurt from marching up steep inclines in the Kogarah area and sprinting across pedestrian crossings to ensure that the Minx, the stroller and I wouldn’ t be smooshed by grumpy drivers.
I could, of course, just pay $20 and get a taxi from home to work.
The down side of this is that I am Scottish and I hate paying for taxis when I can walk.
The upside is that I lost 500 grams from cycling to work last Tuesday.
My feeling is that the shock of trying to cycle along Princes Highway at 8.00 am in the morning made my metabolism work a wee bit faster than normal.
Also shitting oneself while commuting must lead to weight loss.
Unattractive but effective.
Here are some of my other commuting shoes from my first week or so at (paying) work: the furry shoe boots (last worn here )
And the Faith Stilettos (worn at work in the warehouse, not on the way to work):
Then of course there were the injurious sandals:
With a close up and a hope that this year might somehow become easier.