An Ode to Reefs

Yesterday was a sad, sad day. I lost a pair of very dear friends of mine. I used to have them in my daily life, but now, they’ve been blown to bits. Literally (ish). Who am I talking about, my Reef flip-flops of course, and don’t you forget it.

Now it might seem ridiculous to dedicate a blog post to a pair of shoes, nay, sandals, but these were not just any sandals people. Imagine exploring a city and walking on air, standing all day in from on a Thai classroom without a backache to speak of, or traversing from water to cement and back again without a care…all because your Reefs have got your back. I’ve had these guys since my senior year of high school. We’ve been through a lot together and they were perfectly molded to the shape of my feet. Basketball seasons, snow, Europe and back again, and my first (almost) seven months in Thailand.

Jacket? Check. Scarf? Check. January? Check. No reason not to rock the Reefs.

I can’t explain how much of a flip-flop person I am and Reefs are the royalty. The freedom, the comfort, the ability to stretch out your toes for as far as you freakishly can. I preach to the masses about them. I was lucky enough to convert Jeff and witness the purchase of his first pair (he loves them thank you very much and has since bought multiple pairs, not Reefs, but we’re taking baby steps). I’ve come to the conclusion that wherever I work in the future, I need to be able to wear flip-flops every day. Where is that ok? Point me and my Reefs (as soon as I get a new pair) in that direction. I keep a solid stance that if the weather channel says the high is going to be above 50 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s officially flip-season (it used to be 40 when I spent most of the day inside, but then I went to college). Sometimes that’s bitten me in the ass when it’s a rainy April day and I would stroll across Pitt’s campus as the library courier and I wouldn’t be able to feel my toes, but come finals, I couldn’t imagine anything other than sweats and flip-flops. (Side note: My Mom, as awesome as she is, calls them flips for short, while I’m more of a flops fan. To each their own.)

You can see the flip-flop love runs in my family, my cousin Jimmy even got them tattooed on him

So what happened? I walked out of my room yesterday morning to discover the soi dog puppies that come around at night had chewed through one of the straps of my right Reef. Now this isn’t the first pair they chewed through, I just happened to not care about  because they were 20 Baht sponge things that my little sister bought for me. As a fellow Volunteer told me, rookie move, Erin. Never leave the good flip-flops out for those nasty little buggers. As if I didn’t hate soi dogs enough, they had to go and ruin the shoes that I live in here.

First pair, Gambol knock offs, mai bpen rai

I understand if you get a little teary eyed...I did.

What’s a girl to do? Well with English camp to run off to, I had no choice to wear my black flats (evil, unsupportive, constraining things that they are) because we have to wear all black in mourning for the King’s relative (aunt I heard?) that has passed away. Government workers are supposed to wear black for the next 15days…uh Mom, can you send me a new pair of Reefs in express mail?! I might spring for a cheap pair like the Thais have to hold me over through then, but seriously, Mom, can you get on that? Black, Men’s Smoothy, size ten…you’re the best.

The ironic thing about it, just the day previous, I was raving about them to the other Volunteer at the English camp with me and mentioned that I was thinking of having another pair sent from America so that I wouldn’t have to go a day without Reefs if my pair I had died on me. Alright fate, you won this round, but I’ve got your name and number. Long story short, Reefs are awesome, soi dogs are not for killing mine (among other assorted reasons), and you should go out and buy a pair. Seriously, you’ll thank me later.

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One thought on “An Ode to Reefs

  1. I too shed tears for your beloved “flippers.” Unless you are a true flip flop lover than you will never truly understand the pain and discomfort this brings. Nothing like a great pair of flippers, broken in perfectly to fit your feet like Cinderella’s glass slippers. Well… being in California I have a great source for Flip flops. All I need is the size you need and I can handle the rest. So you better get back to me sooner than later so the greatest gift of all can be on its way to you.

    I lost an amazing pair but a few months ago. Although I did not lose them to some free range animals… it was simply their time. The sole was so worn down that the strap had nothing left to hold onto. LOL

    Other than the lastest trouble it seems all is going well there. Joanna and I talk about you often. She and I will be going back East to visit the family in less than two weeks. Man, we are so stoked to get back there and see everyone. It will be the first time Joanna has met any of the family other than my mom and yourself. Hopefully you will be able to come by for another week after the corps. The wedding date is all set for April 28th, 2012. It will all be local for the mass of family Joanna has. LOL Your mom, my mom, and Aunt Chris are all coming out for it so I should have a good number of Clouses on my side of the church.

    Thank you for posting your adventures on here so I may keep up with the oh so interesting life of Erin. The photos and stories are great. I hope you continue to have a safe, great time. This experience is one of a life time. I miss you cuz and hope to hear back from you soon.

    best wishes

    Jimmy Clouse

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