These sandals accommodate my flat 'arches' and my large bunion.. They are a combination of Huaraches and Tevas... The materials include, Steel belted car tire, leather, velcro, more leather, wire nails and shoe laces. The fit is perfect and I am taking orders.. No, they don't come cheap.. I've made countless shoes and sandals in the past.. Shoe and sandal makers don't usually make durable foot ware for people with bunions and flat feet.. I just solved that problem..
Wednesday, May 6, 2015 @7:04:48 PM
The poor people in the slums and also in rural Argentina, especially the north make sandals, and even complete shoes like these with "tire tread" soles. One time, my wife and some of the other teachers at the school got some money together to buy some of the poor kids, a few of them some shoes. They went to a wholesaler where they were able to procure, at a fair and low price, some nice, new, comfy shoes of a known argentine brand. They brought them and proceeded to give them to some of the kids that had bad, really worn shoes with holes etc. One girl came up, and my wife handed her a box of shoes. The girl came back some minutes later and said to my wife " I dont want these shoes" my wife asked why. She said if you are going to buy me some shoes, I only wear Addidas shoes, Im not interested in these. My wife was shocked and actually her feelings were hurt. The ladies got their own personal money together for these kids because they really desperately needed a decent pair of shoes. A perfect example unfortunately of the entitlement mentality that exploitation through idealistic politics has bred in the urban poor population here. Now having said that, the poor rural argentins are very different they are very humble, sweet people, an absolute joy to be around. It's interesting the difference. Many in the US really have no idea about how things are diwn here, nor would they undersand it many of them.
Wednesday, May 6, 2015 @7:07:35 PM
Of course the tire tread sandals they make here are much cruder and rudamentary than these that you make....which are nice. But the idea is the same. But they are so creative many of them...I am often impressed with their ingenuity, they throw nothing away here.
Wednesday, May 6, 2015 @7:10:55 PM
In Peru I bought Ojutas..? Car tire sandals..All of the Inca Trail Porters were wearing them.. Yes, and I understand the idea of entitlement.
Thursday, May 7, 2015 @7:37:53 AM
ojotas - That's flip-flops in spanish....they call them by the same thing here. The folks in norther Argentina in the "Alto-Plano" or high deserrt will wear them during the day. Those things hardly ever wear out and they last forever. I'm just amazed at the creativity here of people, not just of artesans or even the poor....but folks in general. The US is such a "throw-away" society! Living here has taught me the importance of not always wanting so much and being happy with what you have and making things work. I haven't owned a TV since I've been here ( of course we do have a laptop and Ipad LOL ) Some ridiculed me here in the beginning for buying a VSO, but at the time I had no other way of procuring a Violin. One gentlemen really went off on me, but hey, it's the american mentaility. Sometimes, you just have to make do with what youve got, and you learn to appreciate it as well. Argentina and south america, and my new argentine family has really taight me that. My wife grew up in a poor, modest, but hard working class family. There were times when the only way they could get money for maybe a carton of pasta and some bread for dinner, was to barter for things on the street. Others had brand name imported clothes from italy and she had hand me downs. The rarely had money for new things or anything nice and lived in a very cramped apartment. Yet, their parents found ingenious ways to get and make things for my wife and her sisters and she has no regrets about her childhood. My wife is excellent with money and really humble....she's really taught this old gringo a thing or two. Living here showed me how easily I took many things for granted in the US....people in the US really don't know how blessed they are and really what they've got and what people live with down here and have endure on a daily basis. Not just the lack of convenience and comfort but MANY MANY other things. But you know that having been down here.
Thursday, May 7, 2015 @7:43:23 AM
What really moved me, was when we went to the US for the first time with my new wife and I bought my wife a pair of Boots from her favorite brand. A brand that she had loved and admired ever since she was a girl. Their was a mean girl in one of her classes who was able to get one of these pairs. She took every opportunity to rub it into my wifes face about it, knowing my wife liked the nice clothes as well. My wife could only get catalogs and sit on her bed and dream of such nice shoes and boots while the cheap pair she had needed to be constantly repaired because the soles were falling off. Well when I knew she had her eye on one of these, we went and bought her a pair for the first time at 36 years old. She had to wait 36 years, she became very emotional and they are her favorite pair, she takes REALLY GOOD care of them. She really cried and said she never thought she'd ever enjoy a pair of such nice boots. I knopw it seems material, but to her it was a big thing. She never imagined she'd meet a young north american and have the opportunity to travel to the US one day, she said she never imagined it. For me it was special knowing my wife.
Thursday, May 7, 2015 @7:45:16 AM
I might just get a pair from you...how much will they be?
Thursday, May 7, 2015 @7:53:36 AM
Which reminds me... when we took kids to Nicaragua, upon their return to the States they would always get down and kiss the floor in the airport....
Thursday, May 7, 2015 @7:56:36 AM
Erik, they are SO labor intensive to make... Cutting a car tire is difficult.. Then there has to be the leather overlay, and the hand sewing of the velcro....I probably have 6 to 8 hours involved with making each one...If you get a nice, thick piece of leather you could make simple huaraches in about 20 minutes....The only problem with leather bottoms is that it can get slippery when you walk on a smooth surface..
Thursday, May 7, 2015 @8:11:35 AM
I spent 8 months with a poor family from one of the Churches in Chile outside of Santiago. It was winter, July right at the bottom of the Andes. I could walk out front and look up and see a massive mountain range, right there. However, their home was basically a shack, even nice by appalachian standards. It leaked terribly, all they had was a simple gas heater ( that they also used to heat up bread for toast ) and you can imagine in central Chile at night, cold wind blowing down from the Andes into the valley, it got into the upper teens, low 20's at night easily sometimes, daytime usually pouring rain, and a cold rain, say mid 40's. Anyways, living there with them was like a step above camping honestly. They had a rooftop of "chapa" just little overlaying sheets of metal and after every rain, he, my good freind, had to go up there and re-arrange the metal sheets to keep the rain out as best he could ( buckets everywhere inside ) We had water and electricity but a rudamentary gas stove in the kitchen. Gas had to be procured from propane tanks that you could buy and exhange off of trucks that drove through the neighborhood twice a month announcing through gian loud speakers on top of the truck with music that their were "gas tanks" for sale. So, we'd get this tank ( lasted about a month ) and when we needed to cook, we connected it to the gas stove to cook. When we needed a hot shower ( bathroom was just a simple shower, dirt floor outside with a simple concrete pad and a "hole" in the middle. If we wanted a hot shower, we disconnected the propane tank in the kitchen and connected to it a rig he had set up in the bathroom to heat the water ( nobody had hot water from a tap. The back of the abthroom actually had a plastic tarp to cover one side of it as it was open to the back patio...so it was like an open shower bathroom. Imagine showering in that in 20 degree weather. Of course if we didnt have the gas we just didnt shower. It was ALWAYS freezing in there. Most of the time we just sat there bundled up in coats with a hot tea or coffee....inside the house, er hut. Several times I could hear thieves at night running accross our roof tops. I saw mice several times and 1 rat. The house was "infested" with roaches and the refrigerator was tiny, but ancient and smelled like mold on the inside. Clothes were of xcourse hand washed and hung. I paid for the food, as I had some cash, but they offered me a simple bed with many covers ( which was actually comfortable ) it was nicer than their own bed and I slept in like room that really was no more than a closet, no windows, one simple light bulb and the ceilings were so low everywhere I had to constantly duck down all the time ( chileans are short LOL ) My friend at the time made cash by cleaning swimming pools of wealthy people ( who many tyimes didnt pay him. Since then, I'm happy to say he's gotten better employment ( working as a mechanic, and has been able to rent a house that's a little nicer, and better made than the hut they lived in before. Also in a much safer neighborhood. I'm still friend with them and we talk on the hpone sometimes. I love Chile....great memories and experiences!
Thursday, May 7, 2015 @8:20:28 AM
My fond memories are of Nicaragua.. It wasn't THAT poor, but I can relate..I went every summer for ten years and stayed with the same family and watched their kids grow up..Our group was in Posoltega just ONE week before Hurricane Mitch wiped several thousand people off of Las Casitas volcano. Two of up immediately returned and helped find bodies. What an experience..I haven't visited for about ten years. Things have changed.. There is the internet in the community now and most of the kids have cell phones..(when we first visited there were only about 5 cars and ONE phone for a community of about 3,000 people)...I get to Facebook with a lot of the kids (adults now)...
Thursday, May 7, 2015 @9:35:54 AM
Did you were with the peace corp or charity or a missions group of some kind? What spurned you to visits if I may ask?
Thursday, May 7, 2015 @10:21:00 AM
Bloomington has a Ciudad Hermana... Posoltega, Nica.... I was on the Committee.
Tuesday, September 8, 2015 @9:11:45 AM
In East africa they do the same thing. I never bought a pair while I lived there, but saw lots of people wearing them.
Tuesday, September 8, 2015 @9:25:14 AM
That pair is what I'm wearing in the videos I recently posted...
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