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I have never heard a laugh as loud as the one let out by my local cobbler when I brought him my old trainers. ‘We don’t re-heel trainers, nobody does,’ he said when he stopped laughing.
Given how mundane and popular trainers and sneakers are, it seems surprising there is no easy way to repair them. Clever start-ups have come up with a taxi service where anyone can be a driver, as well as somewhat less useful tools including tomato corers and grapefruit cutters – so how about creating a new sole that people can glue onto their trainers?
Without such a thing available, I had no choice but to go to the shops and look for new trainers. Many colourful pairs and a piece of cake later, I still hadn’t found a pair that had a colour combination I liked and was waterproof and neither too garish nor too boring.
I bought my previous trainers about three years ago and I’ve been dancing, running and strolling around in them enthusiastically ever since. As a special edition of Nike trainers, they cost over a hundred quid – hardly a bargain.
Luckily, the perfect new pair appeared on the scene just as I wasn’t looking. I was buying groceries in a supermarket, when I noticed the most charming trainers in a nearby aisle. They are just as well designed and comfortable as my former ones – and one tenth of the price at £12. I wouldn’t be surprised if they came from the same manufacturer.
This column was published as part of Marina’s Imaginary Millions in Money Observer, April 2017