We ladies (many of us, at least) are known for our love of shoes. If you’re like me, you may have also dreamt of Carrie Bradshaw’s walk-in wardrobe from Sex in the City. All those pretty, sparkly, sexy shoes…

By definition, a shoe is “a covering for the foot, typically made of leather, having a sturdy sole, and not reaching above the ankle.” (Thanks, Google!)

With that in mind, I recently came to realize that the only definitive “shoes” I now own are my free-diving fins and my trail runners. Neither of these fall into the Sexy Shoe category and I find myself unsure as to whether I should be proud (in a Screw you, you toe-strangling foot jails kind of way) or ashamed.



I did own a pair of wedges 6 years ago. I bought them in England, under complete duress, for a friend’s wedding. Other than the compliments I received on my newly, well-defined calf muscles brought on by the requirement of standing on my tiptoes for 9 hours, I hated them. And this was before I was even an island girl.

Those hideous foot weights travelled with me to all of my island homes (Seychelles, Mallorca, and Mauritius) just in case I felt the need to torture myself again. They remained at the bottom of my North Face backpack for the entire duration, until 2 months ago when I found them – sad and moldy from the tropical island humidity. Despite this, I tried them on and I can honestly say that my feet looked like two potato waffles. Much to my horror, I realized my feet have become flat and wide and well… islandy. (This should be a real adjective, shouldn’t it?)

So, needless to say, I binned them and figured that since practically all the trash gets dumped into the ocean here in Mauritius (insert: sad face), some turtle may totally be rockin’ my gammy, rotten wedges right about now. I don’t miss them, and tropical island living provides me with the perfect excuse not to have to wear other painful shoes like them again. Ever.



Having said all that, I do get rather jealous when I see other island ladies looking damn hot in their pretty shoes. I get foot envy regularly. And to those women who wear heals to the beach (yes, to the beach!): What can I say? I salute you! I should also point out that, whilst I am now at zero in the Sexy Shoes Department, I do love a beautiful dress, some cute sandals, and sparkly jewelry from time to time. I even brush my hair and put on a splash of blusher and mascara on occasion, so I’m not a complete lost cause.

My “shoes” may not be sexy, but they are useful and I couldn’t go on my island adventures without them. Mauritius is a great place – above and below water – and there is plenty to discover here. My free-diving fins allow me to dive down as deep as I possibly can and my trail runners allow me to climb as high as the mountains will take me. And because all of this can happen in just one day, I carry both pairs of my island “shoes” in my car. Always.



Here’s to more non-sexy-shoe island adventures to come!

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What about you? Do you own any actual shoes on your rock?


*photos via @SaltCoralSand on Instagram

Written By:

Current Rock of Residence:


Island Girl Since:


Originally Hails From:


Laura is an international primary school teacher, originally from the landlocked Midlands region of England.

Since leaving the UK, she enjoyed 4 years living on Praslin island, Seychelles, followed by a pit-stop year in Mallorca, Spain, before moving to her current Indian Ocean rock destination, Mauritius.

Mauritius is giant in comparison to Seychelles. Even after a year back in Europe, she still finds herself feeling as though she lives in a metropolis. Of course, we islanders know this is all relative and the reality is that most of this beautiful island is far from busy. The 65km distance from north to south is really nothing.

Laura has never considered herself a hippy, but her feet don’t like shoes. Barefoot is best, but flip flops, trail running shoes, and free-dive fins are sometimes necessary. She doesn’t wear heals. Not because they aren’t pretty, but because her feet are now too islandy and she can’t squeeze them into a pair easily any more. Think Cinderella in crocs!

These seemingly fat feet take her on some pretty cool adventures though, so she won’t berate them too much. She spends most of her time on mountains or in deep water. She likes a challenge and gets a serious buzz from discovering something new. She’s met some of the most inspirational people and learnt from the best… and the worst!

As she comes toward the end of her 6th year of island living, she is feeling the need to share her tropical island girl adventures and life lessons as they continue. You can find her on Instagram @saltcoralsand.

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