My Vans "Classic Tales" Story
Well, I just submitted my own Vans “Classic Tales” entry! For those of you who collect VANS shoes, or even own a pair, share your story with them at: www.vans.com/classictales/tell-us
Here’s what I wrote.
I’ve been through a lot in these shoes.
Being a late collector and fan of the brand, I grabbed my first pair of Vans (boat shoes) in the Winter of 2008 when I vacationed in Okinawa, Japan. At that time, this design was exclusively distributed in Japan only.
Now, I’m usually the kind of shoe buyer who’s very picky with shoes, where I’d mull over for days before finalizing my decision. However, the understated simplicity and effortless cool in these won me over in a heartbeat.
Plus, they were so lightweight that packing it back home to Bangkok would be a breeze.
Since then, I’ve been on streams of dates, attended events, partied up in nightclubs (where I’d bust my dance routines – yes, in these Vans) – and once as I can vividly recall, puked all over these shoes due to over intoxication.
I’ve spent hours in cafes writing my books, shopped for clothes/groceries, hopped on Soi patrolling motorcycles, walked blocks in the pouring rain, conducted business deals, and even had my first dental implants rocking these Vans!
The mileage I’ve clocked in these Vans is immeasurable, as I’ve journeyed through the land of smiles (Thailand), China (Shanghai), Malaysia (Kuala Lumpur) Taiwan (Taipei). Yes, my shoes have absorbed not just various weather conditions, the impatience of time, but also vastly different cultures in Asia.
When I was totally burnt out from building my business during 09′, I shifted back to first gear from “grind mode”, where I’d frequently getaway from work and take on lengthy aimless strolls on the city streets. This was to clear my mind, regather my strength, and gain new perspectives.
Occasionally, I would even alone to the nearest beach (Pattaya), where I’d collect sands the pads pads as I strolled the calming shores.
These Vans were my best travel companion.
During these long therapeutic walks, I contemplated a lot on what “life was really about”, and “where I really wanted to go”.
I came to the stark realization that Life isn’t something you rush through, or work days on end to create; it’s a blessing and gift for you to “live”, embrace, and nurture. It’s not a race. Compete with no one, but only yourself – and move at your own pace, but with an unbending determination and passion. There were many more periods of enlightenment, but I’ll spare the details for now.
It’s been almost 4-years since I’ve had these, and til this very today, they’re still in my rotation of “shoes for the day” – as you can so easily dip your feet into these.
My shoes have aged gracefully and matured with me. They’re a little beat, but still in soldier-strong condition. I’ve sent these to the shoes doctor once after a minor tear on the sides but the repair made it look good as new.These shoes hold too many memories to carelessly abandon or leave in the dark.
There has been too many glorious moments, surreal times, wake up calls, and life turning lessons in my first pair of Vans.
And the journey continues.