I love the bright red patent leather heels I purchased last spring. I also love my first pair of Danskos (also red. hmmmm....). But over the course of my life, it is my navy blue Doc Martens, purchased just AFTER a summer trip to the UK (I know, I know) that win the coveted title of favorite shoes ever (so far).
I spent the summer of '93 traveling around the UK on a trip through my summer camp. Most of our activities were paid for through the enrollment fee, but we all brought a small amount of spending money to buy some souvenirs. I bought a sweater in Scotland and a skirt and top and dress shoes in England. I wanted to buy a pair of Docs, but I wasn't sure what color or style and they cost so much I was nervous. I had never made such a big purchase.
In the end, I chose to purchase half the contents of a Body Shop to bring back home to the US and not a pair of Docs (again - I know, I know).
But once I returned to Maine, I immediately regretted my decision, and desperately wanted a pair of Docs. I eventually found my way to J.L. Coombs and purchased my first pair.
I spent a lot of time considering my color options, but in the end I decided on navy blue. I bought these shoes early in my sophomore year in high school, and I wore them nearly every day for the next three years (along with jeans, an oversized white t-shirt, and some variety of flannel shirt). Few people had Docs in my high school, and none of them had them in navy blue. I loved them. A lot. And when the inside back of the shoes wore out, I had them repaired at the local shoe repair store rather than retiring them.
They were a good pair of shoes, my Docs. They were the first pair of shoes I owned that made me smile just to look down and see them on my feet.