A Very Havie Story: 6 Countries And More

Last 2010, I received gifts from my friend, Ghedi, who was vacationing then in Cebu. She gave me a souvenir Cayman Island shirt and a pair of fuchsia havaianas amongst others.

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I still have them both but one is about to give way. Sadly, my pair of havies are not doing so well these days and because I have attachment issues, I might end up doing the same thing that Doi did with her pair.

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Photo credits: Doi, The Travelling Feet

After I lamented over this a few days ago, I have received some advice from friends to just buy a new pair. I stubbornly noted that getting a new pair won’t do since these havies have accompanied me to 6 different countries (excluding the Philippines) and if I give them up, it’s almost like giving up a good friend who has always been there for me.

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You must be thinking, “Oh no, Den’s gone cuckoo.” Not really. Like what I told you, I have attachment issues. The havies were my happy pills during those ridiculous love drama days in Cebu City, Philippines. They are the same havies that I (and some of my co-teachers) used in that dreary dorm in Zhengzhou, China. They are also the same footwear that got me into trouble in NAIA when I was about to leave for Thailand. When I was lost in the busy streets of Bangkok’s Chinatown and walked my ass all the way to Chamchuree Square, my havies provided the comfort I needed. I crossed the borders of Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia with them. I risked stubbing my toes and getting cuts on my feet because I insisted on discovering Malaysia and Singapore wearing them.

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I am a flip-flop girl when it comes to travelling. I adore the flat sole that is held loosely on the feet by a Y-shaped strap that passes between the first and second toes, and then around on both sides of the feet. This kind of freedom allowed me to hastily take them on and off my feet at any place and at any time (something that I do in buses and border offices). This same freedom also allowed my feet to breathe which a close-toed footwear cannot offer. In short, I knew my feet didn’t stink when I was wearing my havies. (So sue me!)

Anyway while I was agitating over the possibility of my havies’ retirement as my travel companion, I have asked some of my closest girlfriends about their havies. It turned out that I was not the only one who had attachment issues. They too loved their havies and kept even the broken ones.

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There’s Ghedi, the havie hoarder, who have brought her babies with her to the Caribbean all the way to some parts of Asia. She is secretly stashing one black pair which she brought in Manila with a certain someone who she kept hush-hush for years. I have wondered why she had that dark colored havie. She always preferred candy-colored or girly styled flip-flops in the first place. Now I know why.

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Icholle’s havies have a funny a story to tell. The grey ones gave way while she was shopping in Ayala Cebu six years ago and because there was no means of fixing it, she was forced to buy a new pair. I could just imagine her digging in her pocket to pay for something that she didn’t plan to buy in the first place. (If that was me, I would probably just walk barefoot.) The white havies are still alive but was brutally attacked by her neighbor’s dog. Those rubber soles are quite durable. Looks like girls are not the only ones who have a penchant for havies.

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Some havies even have coffins! No, I don’t mean the real ones; just old, little boxes where they can permanently reside like what Rhodora has for her first metallic pair. Her havies retired five years ago and since she mentioned the word “first,” I ‘m assuming that there’s a second or even a third (especially since I saw her sporting a pair in the beaches of St. Kitts; long before she conquered New York City).

So, do you have a havie story to tell?

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