Another historic milestone has been reached this weekend as we took the girls to buy their first shoes. I’m not sure they were as excited as I was about this shopping trip. If they were looking forward to it in any way, they certainly kept it to themselves.
We piled everyone into the car and headed off to the Dubai Mall, the largest shopping mall in the world, apparently. They have a vast selection of shops including that iconic British brand, Clarks; so we felt sure we’d find exactly what we needed.
As it turned out, Clarks in Dubai doesn’t offer children’s shoes. Another of those little anomalies that drive me mad and make me curse Dubai. It’s like the fact that they can offer every single variety of Dorset Cereals known to man, but Twinings Everyday teabags, Cadbury’s Whole Nut and Wispa bars? No chance. I can’t be the only person that stuffs them in her suitcase every time I travel back from the UK, can I?
Anyway, we were eventually directed to Ecco Kids which I have to admit, from the name alone, didn’t fill me with hope. However, the fact that it had a separate children’s entrance that was barely a metre high and led to a mini bridge with stairs to climb, meant my son was swiftly enticed into the store. Once inside, he soon spotted the Wii and the television; again at the perfectly planned child-friendly height; so that was the last we saw of him for the duration of our visit.
There was a fairly substantial range of shoes to choose from, so having measured the girls’ feet (without even an ounce of co-operation from either of them), we dispatched the assistant to the store-room to bring us a selection to try on.
At this point, the girls started to show some interest. Lots of shoes meant lots of boxes, and boxes have lids. For the next few minutes they busied themselves removing all the lids that they could find and then scrunching up the tissue paper laid on top of all the shiny new shoes.
We then played ‘catch your baby’ for a fair while as they both seemed fascinated by the shop exit. This was followed by wrestling them both to the ground in a desperate attempt to actually apply some shoes. It was a fairly exhausting process so once we’d established that the first pair fit, we wearily smiled at the assistant and said we’d take them. The thought of trialing any further pairs was just too much to bear.
As I handed over the cash, I had a little eureka moment. Contrary to my husband’s firm-held belief that a certain brand of shoes of which I am fond, are vastly overpriced; my fabulous Choos are actually amazingly good value. I paid the equivalent of £50 per pair for the girls sandals and by my reckoning, we’ll be doing really well if they last until October. So, that’s a cost per month of around £12.50. I’ve yet to throw out a pair of Jimmy’s finest so frankly, as far as I’m concerned, my £ per month ratio is looking pretty damn reasonable.
I wonder when their sale starts?