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New toes, new trip, old financial worries.......


I've always loved the name of Deborah's blog, Old Shoes -- New Trip http://www.slowtrav.com/blog/deborah/which reflects her priorities: she'd rather spend on travel and make do with her current shoes, car, whatever the item!

I think that's a great philosophy and one I share. My sturdy little Toyota is 17 years old, my sofa sags and my TV is so old that I can't hook up both a VCR and DVD player. Whatever. These aren't high priorities.

But two places I will spend money is on travel and on my toes. Every four or five weeks, I have a manicure and pedicure. We set my appointments the beginning of the year, so I can get the best slot (Saturday afternoons, after the gym.)

It's an expensive little indulgence, but I put it down to good health and further argue that I'm supporting a local, small businesswoman. Above is my pedicure from last Saturday, featuring the OPI polish Louvre Me, Louvre Me Not --- a beautiful, violet colour.

Vesna, my esthetician and miracle worker, who has also become a close friend, has saved my feet from various fungi (curse that gym!) ingrown nails, corns, calluses and everything else that goes with size 12, misshapen feet.

She does a superb job -- I almost never have chips in the polish, even after 5 weeks. Vesna is, however, a somewhat stern taskmistress. I'm not allowed -- ever -- to leave the salon in closed-toed shoes or boots after a pedi. (The polish doesn't really set for several hours.) That can makes for a long walk home in sandals when there is a lot of snow. But, being frugal, I'm willing to make the sacrifice to save my toenail polish. All winter, it's a pleasure to look at my bright, shiny feet when I get home at night, and in the morning. And in yoga class.

My other big purchase this weekend was my airline ticket for my June trip to Italy. I watch airfares really closely and rarely see anything from Ottawa to Italy for under $1,000. Last year, I felt badly burned when I saw -- for one day only -- a ticket to Rome for under $1,000. It disappeared so fast that I couldn't grab it and wound up paying $1,200 to fly Ottawa-Montreal-Zurich-Florence return on SwissAir. Not bad, but not great. Especially with so many transfers. (Incidently, flights in and out of Canadian tend to be considerably higher than those from the U.S. presumably due to the smaller population base.)

But Friday night, when I saw Ottawa-Toronto-Rome for $650 -- more direct, full Aeroplan points -- I thought I'd better snap it up. Of course, with taxes and fuel surcharge, it comes to $1,000. There may be even cheaper tickets later in the spring, but since I haven't ever seen Rome for under $1,000 during high season. I decided to grab it.

So, now I'm back to worrying about my finances -- as usual. But I stand by my decisions. New trip, new toes, old worries!

Comments (17)

This is a great polish, Sandra. I am guilty of the same indulgence too. I love pedicures! But I only get them in the summer. In the winter, I just polish my own toe nails(so my yoga class colleagues don't have to suffer looking at my bare toe nails.LOL).
I follow the same strategies too, I hardly ever go shopping, and we are pretty much homeless if it wasn't for agency housing, gotta love it!

Your toes look great! The names of all those OPI polishes are too funny.

And congratulations on the plane ticket (I think you were wise to jump on that price).


I really relate to the sore feet thing; i am an original member of that club. When I get a pedicure, I often add a ten minute foot massage as well - the technicians know I'm good for two cycles of the massage chair and a decent tip.


I usually hide my toes in the winter, but I did have a pedicure to start out the new year.

I used to get manicures too, but I could never get out of the salon without wrecking one.

Beautiful toes!

Great toes - and congratulations on your ticket! Awesome!!

I get pedicures regularly too. I have big feet too and the pedicures make them look nicer.


Candi, I'm sure you're on your feet a lot and appreciate a good pedicure! But, you're right about priorities.

Annie, I love the OPI names. I used to wear a bright red called I'm Not Really A Waitress (who knows why!)
Thanks for the support on my ticket purchase. I've been wondering if I should have waited for a better deal.

Marcia, isn't the food massage the best part!

And Nancy, getting out of the salon in one piece is the hardest part!

Cindy Ruth, thanks -- I don't think of my toes as pretty, but I love the colour.

Chiocciola, I'm glad I'm not the only one concerned with foot grooming! But remember, we have long, elegant feet -- not big -- but long, elegant feet. (Someday, I'll believe my own mantra!)

Kathy (Trekcapri):

Hi Sandra, I like the color of your polish. I think you have nice toes and smooth looking feet. And I say why not treat yourself! Congratulations on purchasing your tickets! Can't wait to read a report on your next trip!

Great post Sandra! And BTW, my sofa sags too. But then again I'm working on Italy trip # 4! :)

I have never had a manicure or a pedicure. That is one of the *not priorities* for me, but I do have a few DVD players - 1 region 2 player, 1 dvd recorder, 1 dvd/vcr player (got before I bought the recorder) so I probably have paid for many manicures and pedicures.

Wow, $1000.00 is a great price! Right now it is $2000.00 with fees/taxes from Hawaii. So if you land in Rome, are you thinking of changing your itinerary at all? I read there is a new faster train that I think goes to Bologna in about 2 hours (not sure on exact time).

Barb Cabot:

This is a girlie post...and I LOVE it. I want my job to be the person that gets to name the color of nail polish. I louvre your color! My mom used a color lipstick from Revlon in the 50's or 60's called, "
Cherries in the Snow". I really loved that name. Take away most things but don't take away my pedicures and travel.

I also get regular pedicures. I don't like my toes and my esthetician makes them look much nicer than what they really are.

Congratulations on the purchase of the airline ticket. Great fare! Let the planning continue ...


Kathy, thanks so much! And perhaps it's for the best that you (like me!) are devoting your money to travel rather than a new sofa. After all, when your kittie comes, he/she may be tempted to leave his/her marks by using the sofa as a scratching post!

Girasoli, you're so much better with technology than me. And you probably have lovely feet, since they're not crammed into ugly old winter boots for half the year.

I had no idea prices from Hawaii to Rome are so expensive, altho it makes sense -- you travel a long distance! This won't really change my plans too much. I'll land in Rome and, as you say, take a fast train up to Bologna, then Parma for my first nights. Then, at the end of the trip, I'll go from Umbria to Rome rather than Florence for my final night. (Maybe there's a blog post in this!)

Barb, mani-pedi talk is pretty girly, isn't it? It's fun for a change. I love the name of your mother's lipstick -- cherries in the snow! That must have been a stunning colour.

Thanks, Maria, I am in full planning mode!


Oh such pretty toes! I am envious of "long, elegant feet". My sister affectionately refers to my own as "brick feet"...and sadly, it's not entirely inaccurate! How exciting that you have your ticket!!!!


Thanks, Anne, I'm quite excited about my ticket!

Now, what do brick feet look like? I'm thinking short, but wide??

OK I will start calling my feet long and elegant from now on! They are very narrow, which means that pretty much all shoes are too wide. If they are not tied on somehow, I very often find myself walking out of my shoes!


Chiocciola, I know what you mean! As if having long, elegant feet isn't enough, I have narrow heels so -- like you -- I'm either walking out of my shoes, or my feet slide down and smack into the end of the shoe (leaving a great gap at the heel.)

It's always something....

Oh tell me about it! We should make a club! I also have a big big big toe so all the pressure is always on that one big toe. I always slide from side to side and whenever I wear heals it is like I am carrying my body weight on those two big toes. I like ballet flats with straps and high heels with straps as well.

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