On a recent excursion via the London Underground, on a typical blustery British January Day, I proudly walked to my near British Rail station in my new 3 inch high heeled boots, tip tapping the way along to find both platforms completely filled with people, a rather strange occurrence for our rather small town. Three transport nightmares had left the people of Teddington without a train for over an hour. So when I heard the next train would be on the other side, I proceeded to climb the ancient Victorian stairs to platform 2. I looked up in time to see the man in front of me break into a run, so whilst muttering curses that would make my Grandmother turn in her grave I started to run. In these god-awful boots, I ran up the stairs just as I saw the headlights of the train peek up underneath the tunnel in the light mist. I ran across the platform and then down the stairs and pushed my way to the nearest carriage slumping down in a rather graceless and inelegant manner into the nearest vacant seat. After a relatively long and tiresome journey, about half an hour longer than expected, the train finally pulled into Waterloo. However, then came the London Underground. This was totally fine. In fact it was more than fine. How many times had I done this after all? I was riding the tube like any normal Londoner, as I was, on a Friday morning after running like a madwoman all the way from Platform 1 to Platform 19 to meet up with my group. Then the tube stopped, I fell onto a stranger. It was not an elegant fall. I did not fall like a graceful dancer with a body bend at the barré. Oh no, I did not fall like a beautiful woman; I sprawled onto the front of a gargantuan man, much to the amusement of my dear friends who did not even try to catch me. All because of the boots. My scuttle transfer of weight, a ballet technique which I usually apply when the train stops failed to work. I underestimated the friction of my shoes and the new position of my feet, making me a failure physicist by any standards; and I flew. The man humouredly helped me up, red faced and all, and I apologised for my fall blaming myself, not the catastrophe boots. However, it seemed to me that someone “up there” possibly my sister, seemed to want a good laugh, at my expense. Obviously I was a great amusement running this way and that, just like in the Aeneid XII; I behaved like Turnus, with a tote for a shield and heels for a sword. I did not complete five revolutions of Waterloo, I completed four. This day gave me a newfound appreciation for all those business women out there, who continue to battle the tube in Jimmy Choos and L. K. Bennett’s.
Picture source: http://wdsauk.co.uk/shoe-lovers-beware-killer-heels-are-crippling-women/