After checking in at Holiday Inn Macau, I changed shoes before heading out to Senado Square.
I wore sandals during the flight because I wanted to avoid having to take off my shoes for inspection. Yes, just like any normal human being, I don’t like being “molested” at the airport or at malls, and have strangers poking around my bag and person.
This time, I was not asked to remove my shoes, and was not even pat down. What a good experience. What is wrong with our world when going into a mall or an airport and NOT being pat down or searched before going in becomes a good experience? But that is a rant for another day. But in any case, my recent experience at NAIA Terminal 3 was molestation-free and actually quite nice (meaning, no negative thing happened) so, err… kudos? Jeez, how low have our expectations sunk?
But back to my shoes. My Skechers were bought a little more than a year ago at an SM 3-Day Sale. I’ve used them maybe 7 times since, usually when I know I will be walking a lot (travelling), or on the rare gym session. I used them at the gym just last September and they were fine. This is my third pair of Skechers. My 2 older pairs lasted me around 5 years each.
My friend S and I left Holiday Inn Macau and were heading to Senado Square. The Pinoy staff gave us easy directions – just head towards the (easily visible) Lisboa hotel around the corner and follow the main road to Senado Square. Fortunately, we were just a block away from the hotel when I felt something flapping loose at the bottom of my shoe. Flap. Flap. Flap. We looked at what was wrong, and the middle piece of the sole had come unglued and was flapping when I was walking. Another part of the side had also come loose. The original glue holding them together just stopped working somehow.
The whole reason I brought my Skechers along was to serve as my walking shoes. I didn’t expect the third pair to fall apart on me at such an inopportune time!
S convinced me to go back to the hotel and change back into my sandals. I knew my feet were going to hurt like hell but I didn’t have any other choice. While walking back to the hotel, I was dragging my foot to prevent the “flap” from tripping me. I was trying really hard to look normal while shuffling like a zombie. Was this what wearing very bad tap shoes felt like? My best bet was to find a new pair of rubber shoes that night.
We walked to Senado Square and looked for shoes on sale. I was just looking for a pair to tide me over for 2 more days of walking. I didn’t want to buy uber-expensive shoes. I felt bad enough for the almost P3,000 I spent on the Skechers that got me in this mess. But alas, all the shoes we found there were of the branded variety.
While walking back to our hotel from Senado Square, we saw a department store building across the street. The sign read New Yaohan. I assumed I would be able to buy cheap China rubber shoes just to get me through 2 days. But when we got inside, it was chaos! The department store itself was high-end (so much for looking for cheap China shoes), and there was a sale going on. I hadn’t seen that many people going crazy over a sale since the early days of SM’s 3-Day Sales. People were buying small kitchen appliances like they there was no tomorrow. Almost everyone had a gigantic New Yaohan paper bag filled with purchases.
The New Yaohan department store reminded me of Sogo in Hong Kong. The store was 8 stories high. The 8th floor housed the food court. We tried looking for superglue, but apparently, New Yaohan doesn’t sell superglue 🙁 What was really funny was that there is a shoe repair place inside New Yaohan! But they don’t repair rubber shoes! The shoe repair guy was fixing a business shoe for a customer, and we saw him using superglue to put in a new sole. S and I looked at each other and thought the same thing – this is the answer to our prayers! We looked at the shoe repair guy and asked him if he sold some shoe glue. But the guy wasn’t really friendly. He said no, then ignored us! We sat down and waited for him to finish with his customer, and I stared at him and signaled him, but he was ignoring us! I mean, we don’t look creepy, do we? Finally, when he was done with his customer, we were desperate and S was all like, I’ll pay you $20, just sell me your glue! You don’t have to give us the whole bottle, just a little bit! We were begging the poor guy to sell us glue! The shoe repair guy wouldn’t sell us his shoe glue and thought we were crazy! Then I was like, Okay, you don’t have to sell me your glue, just tell me what it’s called in Chinese and where I can buy it! He probably thought we were nuts and kept saying he didn’t know anything! The glue was supplied by his company and he didn’t know where we could buy some. Now that I think about it, it was a good thing he didn’t have security throw us out! Haha. OMG! What a story to tell. It is funny now, in hindsight.
We walked a bit more inside New Yaohan looking for superglue. S left me at the shoe section while she went browsing. She got a good Sanrio haul for her niece! According to S, the Sanrio stuff at New Yaohan was less expensive than other places she has seen. Sorry, no pictures of New Yaohan. My feet were killing me at that point.
I spent the next hour trying on different shoes. All the shoes were so expensive! I just wanted some cheap sneakers to tide me over 2 days of walking… I didn’t want to spend a small fortune on it. I tried on some Pumas that looked like Crocs. They were on sale but it was difficult to find that had my size. If I did find some in my size (and was willing to overlook the horrendous colors), they couldn’t find the other shoe. Those horrendous shoes were the cheapest I could find there at maybe MOP 250 (around P1,500). Original price was around almost MOP500, but they were on 50% off.
Now I had been thinking of getting some classic Converse shoes for a while. So I checked out the Converse displays and saw these at only MOP299! (about P1,800) MOP is the symbol for Macau Pataca (Macau money).
If I was going to buy shoes, then I might as well buy something I was actually considering buying, right? Rather than spend P1,500 on horrendous Pumas. At least the Converse shoes were something I would actually use. I really actually prefer not having to buy any new shoes at all, but I was desperate and needed shoes for walking. Just in case we couldn’t find any “rugby” or superglue.
Now the Converse shoes are not the most comfortable of shoes for walking. I am used to the thick rubber sole type like the ones you see on the Skechers and Nikes and Reeboks. I find that the Converse shoes don’t provide as much cushion as the walking shoes I’m used to. But they would do. I bought the Converse shoes.
When we got back to the hotel, we asked the Pinoys there if they had some “rugby” we could borrow. I told them my shoe broke. “Rugby” is a brand of all-purpose adhesive in the Philippines and anyone from the Philippines will know what I’m talking about. They told me they didn’t have any “rugby”, but that there was a supermarket just across the street where I could buy superglue! We were like, aaaaarrggghhhh! We should have just asked the Pinoys about superglue earlier and avoided this whole running around looking for replacement shoes. But at that time, we were hurrying to see the Ruins of St. Paul which closed at 6pm, so it didn’t occur to me at that time.
We bought the superglue. It was only MOP 9.
I glued the flapping parts of my Skechers’ sole.
The following day, I wore my Skechers shoes, thinking that it was fixed. I had already superglued the loose parts back. But boy, was I wrong!
I brought my Converse shoes along as backup, but I was walking with my Skechers. And fortunately, I also brought the superglue along.
We walked to Hotel Sintra where we were told we could take a free shuttle to City of Dreams in the Cotai side of Macau. From there, we could take another shuttle to The Venetian. On the way to Hotel Sintra… guess what happened! Another part of my Skechers shoes started coming loose and flapping around!
We were near the Lisboa hotel so we quickly ducked into their restroom where I glued my Skechers back together again. Throughout the rest of the day, various other parts of the sole kept coming loose. I kept looking to go to the restrooms to glue my shoes back together! The parts that I had already glued stayed glued, thankfully.
To give you an idea of how much came off, here’s a picture of the left shoe. Almost everything came off! Not all at the same time, though. The middle strip was the first to come off. After gluing that back on, after walking a few hours, another part came off. After supergluing it and then walking for another few hours, another part would come off… until eventually almost everything had come off and been superglued back!
S and I were joking that I had left a trail of superglue across Macau. Lisboa, City of Dreams, The Venetian, Wynn. Thanks a lot, Skechers!
UPDATE (March 2015): After I reached out to Skechers about the problem I had with these sneakers, they offered to repair it for me. They were going to repair the glue or re-glue it or something. I have gotten my shoes back but it doesn’t look like anything has changed. It still looks the same, and I can’t tell where it was repaired 🙁 I thought they would remove the entire bottom flappy part, clean the glue gunk, and re-glue it to make it as good as new as possible, and fix the parts where I wasn’t able to align and glue the flappy part correctly. I still see the same misalignments and spilled glue and I can’t tell where they fixed or repaired anything. I appreciate the effort by the Marketing girl though.
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The Barat Queen
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