Meet Vince. I hiked with Vince yesterday, and he's taking a zero day today as well. His feet are in rough shape, with blisters that make everyone around recoil in shock ("Oh my god! How can you still walk?"). They're pretty ugly.
He's been wearing his boots for the hike, and I'm not one to try convincing someone to switch to sneakers if they're happy with their boots, but he does seem to be limping pretty bad. And there just happens to be a New Balance Factory Outlet a quarter mile down the road. Later in the afternoon, I decide to encourage him to check it out. We start down the street, but within a few steps he's limping so bad that he decides to just take his boots off and walk the rest of the way in his socks. I notice he's pulling pretty hard to pop those boots off.
I help him pick out a pair of sneakers that looks like they fit him very comfortably. His boots, size 8, go in the pack for the next day of hiking. His new sneakers, size 11(!), fit much better. Look at that happy hiker!
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