Previously: The Buff Daddy Slips Ipanema
"Para kang nagsuot ng tsinelas na gawa sa White Rabbit."
That is how I would describe the feeling of slipping a pair of Ipanemas; like stepping foot on a pad made of the locally-made chewy candy.
"Sa sobrang lambot niya sa paa, parang ayaw mo na magsapatos."
The impression would stay, six years past the time I got my flops for free. It was the height of the blogging fever, and after letting my online portal become a vehicle for some fancy promotions, of marketing a brand of footwear that sets aside part of its earnings to help restore the environment, the organizers of the event gifted me with a complementary card, a slip of paper that I could use to purchase my own slippers.
Never in my wildest dreams would I see the flops endure the passing of time. The Ipanemas had seen many places, and witnessed so many events, some, would even trickle down to these very pages, in published entries too many to mention. As a testament to its durability, a selling point I didn't say when I wrote about the pair, the slippers have never been replaced. They were my only flops. I was confident the footwear would endure, that I forgot,
Rubber, like all natural materials, breaks down with time. Mine did, when tiny cracks gave way to large fissures at the base of the slippers, where the plastic strap meets the thick foot pad.
So I have seen the last of the Ipanemas, and may this be my parting entry for a commissioned work that began with a product launch invitation. Let this also be a time for remembering, of the glory days when blog writers were treated like royalties, and get perks for publishing stories that would populate the search engines with copies of consumer products. To this day, I would not deny yearning to return to that time, and write stories about food and travel, like many bloggers did. Forget earning from penning press releases. With perks such as the pair of footwear I got for doing what I loved the most, I would never tire of writing.
This has, after all, been my calling. The published entries, and how they weave narratives that jump from one life to another are my rewards.