AS SOON AS the temperature is consistently over 50 degrees, I pull out the Havaianas. The happiest year of my feet’s life was when I lived in Brazil. I literally wore no other shoe. The V-toe tan was incredible.
But constant flip-flop wearage inevitably leads to Hobbit feet. Thick, callused heels, dirty toenails…the dirt isn’t just on your feet, it’s in your feet, almost as if it’s under your skin.
This year, my first official flip-flop day was in Manhattan. Actually, it started in Brooklyn. I woke up, opened the window, slipped on the Havaianas, and walked out the door. I walked across the Brooklyn Bridge, I walked through Chinatown, I stopped in Little Italy for some coffee and ricotta-prosciutto balls. I don’t remember where else I walked, but I ended up in West Village, hopping from one tiny, crammed jazz club to another. By the time my feet stepped into Fat Cat at 2am, they were looking pretty Baggins-worthy.
I ordered a beer, peeked at the Zappa-sounding jazz group at the front, ducked past the ping-pong tables and shuffle board into the ladies room, and decided to test out my Trekr.
The Trekr is a washcloth that, according to Lunatec, “you never need to wash.” It has a loofah-like texture (made from “QuickDri” nylon material) that will supposedly rinse clean in the sink, resist odors, and dry fast so you can carry it everywhere.
Alone in the ladies room, I slipped off my Havaianas. A nice V of clean skin spread out from my toes, while the tops of my feet were various shades of gray. I steadied myself by gripping the sink and studied the bottoms of one foot, then the other – my heels were positively black. I considered taking a before picture, but ew.
I ran my Trekr under the faucet and started scrubbing one foot, then the other. When I rinsed it, an embarrassing amount of dark gray water filled the sink. When I rinsed again, the water was clear. I gave it an extra squeeze, then stuffed it in my bag. It was completely dry in half an hour; no stains, no smell. (Yes, I smelled it.)
If the Trekr can de-Hobbit my flip-flop feet, I’m thinking it’s a pretty handy rag to bring on camping trips, hikes, to the beach, and anyplace else that gets you grimy.