18
Dec
08

London’s Loose Laces

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While most people are scrambling around hatching plans for New Year’s Eve, I have been developing some new dance pieces for First Night 2009. (Don’t be startled if you see me on the WBZ evening news or a downtown Jumbotron!) In addition to using music by Uncle Monsterface and the Boston Typewriter Orchestra, I am creating a soundscape using field recordings from my travels to Iceland, England, Italy, and the Netherlands this year.

As I have been snipping sound bites together, I remembered how Jason and I had thought that we made it through Logan’s airport security without an incident. For us this was no small feat. If the screw in my knee doesn’t start things buzzing then there is always something harmless, i.e. a lobster, in our bags that somehow wreaks havoc. Please, switch to another line if you ever find yourself behind us.

I was so startled by our good fortune that I found myself staring dumbfounded at the floor. That’s when I noticed the floppy footwear headed towards me. I must have looked rather goofy gawking because the girl in bunny ear boots giggled to her friends as she went by us. We had barely gotten ourselves organized at the gate when the gaggle of kids approached us again.

“Were you staring at my shoes?” She inquired with a bouncy British accent and a bit of belligerence.

“Yes,” I replied.

“Why?”

“I write about shoes and I’ve never seen anyone wear theirs like that before.”

“Really? In Manchester everybody does it.”

“Yeah, I don’t even own a pair because they’re too ordinary,” her loafer loving friend piped in.

This odd encounter provided a sitcom like sense of foreshadowing for our brief stay in Kensington. Similar sets of sheepskin boot shanks slouched next to me on the tube and lounged about the lobby of the Sadler Wells Theater before a Pina Bausch performance.

Ladies in a wide range of ages sported this laid back look in Notting Hill, Chelsea, and Hyde Park.

Their omnipresence reminded me that I had forgotten to ask the giggly girl which brand of boots they were. Some internet sleuthing, however, led me to Camper Industrial boots. They were the closest I could find to the original kind the kid had on and they matched many of the pairs I’d seen lurking about.

So if the stress of the holiday season is pressing upon you, perhaps it’s time to loosen up your laces, and get into a British groove.

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