I came to Sweden with the following footwear: chacos, small (dressier, but still pretty casual) sandals, brogues, short boots, and hiking boots. The change in weather eliminated the possibility of wearing either of the first two. The brogues were the cheapest shoes on the planet, and as such are just not very comfortable. Also, they are quite slick on the bottom, so it is basically impossible to wear them once it snows. So those got eliminated. Then the short boots that were nice-looking and comfortable for everyday wear started to get a bit too worn down. One day I noticed that I had worn through the sole and my heal was stepping onto a bolt which was leaving a mark.
Then I spent a few weeks wearing only hiking boots. It was pretty awkward. Hiking boots aren't super comfortable. They are made to be stiff and give support. And I am just so bad at shopping that I never changed the situation for kind of a long time. But before I went to Prague I was determined to buy new shoes, because I really didn't want to be meeting colleagues while wearing hiking boots (even though our community is quite casual).
Greg suffered through several horrible shopping trips with me. On at least one of them I was ready to go home before we even started. Actually, I think it happened at least three times where we would head into town with the intention of running some errands and doing shoe shopping, and then I would back out of the shoe shopping. Once we did start shopping, I sort of had to figure out what I wanted. I also had to be okay with spending a large sum of money (Sweden doesn't really do "inexpensive" (Ikea is an anomaly), usually most places sell quality items at a quality-item-price).
By the end of one trip I had found a suitable boot, but then it was only available in a tiny tiny size, so that was no good. So I decided that I'd just buy something online and hope that it fit me. Shopping online is something I can do quite easily. So I settled on a boot that was similar to the idea I had gotten of the type of shoe I wanted. Except that the expected arrival date was one day after I left for Prague.
So then we had to make another shoe-shopping trip. Except this time, my standards were seriously low. I already had good boots on the way (assuming I chose the correct size), so I would just pick anything to have as Prague footwear. And in the first store we walked into, I saw nearly exactly what I had been hoping to find.
And that is how this happened.
Yes I basically own two identical pairs of boots. At least give me credit for knowing what I want (once I know, that is)?