Showing posts with label shoes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label shoes. Show all posts

Thursday, July 7, 2016

Flashback shoes: Haruta

Browsing an Japanese online shopping site, I decided to order a pair of shoes that's a throwback to high school days. Haruta was a popular brand back in the 1980s especially for students required to wear leather shoes for much of the school week (4 out of 5 weekdays). I think I wore 3 or 4 pairs of these shoes including the penny loafers and the one with the tassels. Two of those pairs were brown and one was black. Almost all of these had failure on the sole right that I attributed to the shoes I had being fakes. I don't remember the prices but we usually bought shoes at the Marikina Shoe Exchange shops in Cubao. Mine were cheaper and bore some suspicious marks indicating they were fakes. So of course, I just had to have an authentic pair.

Direct from Japan via the Express Mail Service (EMS), the box is opened to reveal a flashback to the 1980s.
The shoes have to be genuine, real leather and...Made in Japan. There were many fake Harutas back in the day and I think I owned and wore a couple of pairs myself at a time when these were the rave for us required to wear leather shoes 4 days a week.
These shoes are easy to clean, easy to shine. They are relatively heavier than my Cole Haans and Florsheims. Pardon for my being mayabang but I earned the money I paid for these shoes :) 


Sunday, July 17, 2011


I have many shoes. I think there might be so many of them that some people might accuse me of having some sort of a fetish. In my mind, I may have gotten this liking of shoes from the Clairvoyant who has quite a number herself. And this number had increased while she's in Singapore - not that it wouldn't if she were here. We do agree that we need these shoes for various purposes including making sure they provide us with the best support and shock absorption when we use them for walking, running or playing sports.

I have 5 pairs of athletic shoes including 3 that I use for running, 1 for field surveys and another for badminton. I used to have a couple of pairs of tennis shoes (one Adidas and another a Nike) that I purchased and used when I was in Japan and brought back home when I returned but these have been retired and passed on to other people. I also had 2 pairs of Nike ACGs that were my favorites for field work but I gave up due to my having trouble finding a good shoe repair shop to repair them once they showed signs of wear and tear. I used to have a splendid pair of Yonex badminton shoes but I lost that to the burglar who robbed back when we were still living in UP Village. Currently, all my athletic shoes are Adidas and based on what I've seen in Adidas' and Nike's designs, the former will remain my choice for a while still. I haven't considered other brands despite being attracted to some designs quite many times. I guess its a matter

I also have a pair of boots that I have just had repaired. These were my second pair of hiking boots that I had also purchased and used in Japan. The first one was passed on to a cousin who's now with the Philippine Marines, and who attested to the pair's durability and water-proofing. I have used such pairs during rainy days and have used my current pair for walking along shallow flooded streets. They have kept my feet dry and warm not only during rainy days but on snowy ones, too. The only thing with them is that they are uncomfortable to use for driving though I have used them on occasion when I felt they were most appropriate those times.

I have 4 pairs of shoes that I use for driving and walking. All of them are waterproof leather as I have made it a point to get water-proof or water resistant pairs given the rains in the Philippines. One does not want the experience of wet and cold feet and I have experienced these quite a few times before. I have 2 other leather shoes including the pair I wore during out wedding. But I use these pairs sparingly these days as they look too formal and are not as comfortable for walking as my other shoes.

My favorites are pairs that I consider to be very good investments as they are the most comfortable pairs for me. There are 3 - a couple of Cole Haans and one Timberland. My first pair of Cole Haans I purchased during my first US trip in 2007. I almost didn't buy the pair as I thought I could do with 1, the Timberland pair that felt so good on my feet when I was trying them on. It was a good thing our friend who accompanied me in shopping convinced me to buy a second pair. I must admit though that I couldn't really decide which pair to buy at the time so the logical thing to do was really to get the two pairs. The price was right and I knew I couldn't afford the shoes if I bought them in the Philippines (the mark up is just insane and unfair). The second pair of Cole Haans was one that was in my wish list and the Clairvoyant got them for me during her recent US trip. Of course, she herself got her own pair after trying them out and finding out for herself just how comfy these were. In fact, the old pair of Cole Haans had Vibram soles while the new ones had Nike Airs, ensuring a good comfy walk with them.

I am no expert in shoes as there have been misses in as far as my selections are concerned. One such miss was a pair I bought at Cartimar in Pasay. That pair was a good fit but I eventually noticed that it had a certain bounce I was uncomfortable with. My feet also ached after walking some distance with the pair and I decided to give it up and pass it on to an uncle who fancied the pair. I also had a pair of athletic shoes that wore off quite quicker than my other athletic shoes. I suspected that these may have been fakes that got mixed into the real ones at the store. Some shops in the Philippines have been reported to do this and this has made me check again and again if indeed I was buying the real things.

Last week, I already had my eye on a pair that I could use for my field work. I relented from purchasing them only as I still had 2 pairs in excellent condition and I found the ones at the store a little expensive. In fact, I do have many shoes but most of them I bought on sales and discounts. Cole Haans cost something like 10 to 15 thousand pesos here in Manila but I got my two pairs for between 5 and 8 thousand pesos only. Not bad for investments that keeps my walking and driving comfortable.