Alice: You know that I am coming along just for you.  I told you that I find her weird.  She is too uptight for my taste.
Eva: Is it because she is more uptight than you?  Do I sense competition there?
Alice: We are talking wikipedia-uptight-definition-has-her-photo uptight.  I am nothing compared to her.  And I warn you I am not taking my shoes off.
Eva: You’ll be fine.  We will have fun.
Alice: I am not taking my shoes off.  And what’s up with that crowd she is hanging out with lately?  Her pseudo boheme friends?  Is this how she socially balances the divorce money she keeps accumulating?  So uncool and totally pseudo also.

We were invited to a cocktail at Champel.  A cocktail that was hosted by Stacey, who was celebrating a successful divorce.  This is what the invite mentioned and inevitably had me wondering if “successful” and “divorce” can go next to each other in a sentence.  But I guess this is how you call a divorce that results in a 1.3 million of stronger nowadays dollars on your way out from a marriage.  Apparently some Merger & Acquisition cuties still make big bucks…

Arriving on the 6th floor of a typical Champel residential building, we were welcome by a flaming red floor mat.  Literally.  I counted the word welcome in at least 7 languages.  Indeed on each side there was at about 5 to 6 pairs of women shoes.  Yes, it was a women only cocktail, because only women can appreciate such an occasion.  I guess guys celebrate it with their mates at a sports bar with several gallons of beer.  And yes, Alice rolled up her eyes a few times to conclude with a big…

Alice: NO!  I told you no!
Eva (while ringing the door bell): Please do not make a scene.

A very polite asian domestic support lady opened the door with a huge smile and a questionable “wecam”.  Her next act was the well instructed ritual he had received: pointing to the both sides of women footwear and implying with this gesture that we had to remove our shoes.  While I was removing mine, Alice gently pushed the domestic support lady and tried to walk straight through the door.  I say “tried”, because she failed.  The asian lady in the most assertive manner blocked Alice, keeping her still on the red flaming door mat.

Alice: Pardon me?
Eva: Your shoes, Alice.
Alice: I am not taking my shoes off.  When you invite people, you accept them as they come.  Not half dressed.  I feel naked without my shoes.
Eva: Come on, baby.  You have such a beautiful pedicure.  Time to show it off.
“Ma’am!” slipped out from the non-smiling face of the door keeper.  And immediately Stacey showed up.

Stacey: Oh you are here finally.  You have missed already 17 minutes of a great party.  Why don’t you come in?
Eva (whispering to Alice): Please take your shoes off.
Stacey: Does anybody have a problem with the no-shoe policy?
Alice: I do! I came prepared for no-knickers policy.  Am I out of theme?  Should I leave?
Eva: Alice!
Stacey: Alice, I adore your humor.  Take your shoes off and come in, darling.  I have some knickers for you inside…

Stacey left us to join her guests.  She also left me begging Alice to put an end to this unfortunate entrance, offering her everything I own, so Alice would take her shoes off.  “This is the biggest proof of my friendship to you.  Bigger than the time that I had to bail you out from…”  Oh Jesus.  I am stopping the description here.  Eventually she took them off, placed them 30cm away from all the other pairs and we walked in.

You would think that God would be kind enough to me to end the evening only with Alice’s non-stop fashion commentary of the fairly boheme friends.  But no!  I must be a very bad girl to be punished like that.  On our way out around 45 minutes later, Alice’s shoes were missing.  Just kill me now, was my immediate thought.  There was a volunteer.

Alice: I will kill you!  My espadrilles are gone!!!  I am fainting now.
Eva: Calm down.  They must be around here.
Alice: Are you blind?  It is a corridor.  THERE IS NO AROUND HERE!  Oh my God.  Somebody left a pair of these ugly espadrilles and took mine.  Do I kill you, Stacey, the rude help or the full bunch of boheme friends inside?
Eva: For just a pair of Espadrilles?  Are you overacting a bit?
Alice: JUST A PAIR?  Have you noticed them?  I just got them!!!  From Spain!  Not some random island corner shop.  It is the must for this summer.  Did you see detail on the heel?  Did you realize the quality of the leather?  The flawless stitching?  This is it!  I am going in to start the killing process.  For the sake of my precious UNISA espadrilles.  They are worth it…