Tuesday 14 July 2009

Revolutions in Footwear?

In a manner echoing that of the Tardis in Doctor Who, my new sandals have the impressive, but ultimately unenviable ability to make my feet even hotter.

As the summer sizzles along and the leaves on the trees turn brown in desperation my peduncular extremities are exploding!

Ok, I’m not sure “peduncular” is the correct term but I AM sure it’s summer; there are more canoes on the river than ducks, the shops are (optimistically) selling “back to school stuff” and my emergency tube of lip salve in the car has liquefied, it was like putting on dripping fat.

And on the television they are showing live coverage of the Tour de France.

There is something hypnotically reassuring about that.

It is something to do with the rhythmic turning of the wheels along sundrenched roads past graceful green meadows, the deceptively effortless way the riders climb the mountains and the mesmerizing way they slip through sleepy villages, parting like a sea before roundabouts or any other obstacles.

Yes, It’s summer - the hum of chattering insects is rising with the temperature, the farmers are cutting the wheat and though yesterday was a rest day at the end of the first week of the Tour, the riders have entered into the Pyrenees and flowed out again onto the plain.

And of course, today is La Fete National, Bastille Day, people’s uprising, birth of a revolution etc etc, oh and fireworks tonight.
Also, traditionally, a French Rider will try to win the day’s stage in the Tour and as I write three of the four people who have broken away from the rest (peloton) and set off for individual victory are citizens of the French Republic.

The identity of the fourth enterprising soul remains a mystery, as I am unable to recognise his nation’s flag(though fittingly it has the same three colours as the French one). I hope he doesn’t spoil the national party by streaking ahead on the next bend.

Last year i was in America so i witnessed July 4th not 14th and fireworks seemed to be a big thing there too but as an Englishman, and only very dimly aware of the fact, i view celebrations of this sought somewhat distantly.

More importantly, what can i do about my feet?

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