Based on a very true recent story.

Saturday is errand day. Between getting caught up at work, I make my rounds of errands.

Haflinger moccasinThe forecast this particular Saturday is for snowpocalypse. The metro area braced for a blizzard, but it wasn’t showing up on my side of town just yet. To go or not to go, I asked and answered myself...again and again and, yawn, again. I was beginning to irritate me. With resolution I pushed “send” on an email at 2:01 p.m. and head out the office door pointing my car toward Dardano’s on Colorado Boulevard just north of the I-25 interchange.

I have a pair of shoes to drop at Dardano’s shoe repair, the same place I’ve been taking my shoes for cobbler’s attention for decades. I decide to explore the new men’s section. Dardano’s more than doubled its space in the strip mall at 1550 S Colorado Blvd, Denver, CO 80222 in 2014. The walls of the gentlemen’s quarters are entirely wrapped in rich wood display cases floor to ceiling. There’s something about the décor that speaks exclusivity, like a club for members only.

It’s President’s Day and the house is packed. Racks fill the aisles with deeply discounted right shoes, right as in right foot. When you find your shoe of choice, the sales rep retrieves the left mate. When my eyes land on the Haflinger moccasin in quarter-inch thick grey boiled wool with a slimmed down sole that is as unobtrusive as it is walkable, I am captivated. I vet that EU size 45.translates to U.S. 12. When I see that the price is cut from $114 to $63, I’m sold.

I ring my daughter-in-law who extends an invitation, “Stop on by...we’re just waiting for the snow to start.”

Each block I travel east of Colorado Boulevard, the white stuff pours on impressively thicker.  Equally impressive is my son’s reaction to the Haflingers. “They’re comfortable, really comfortable,” he sounds a bit surprised. Over the years I’ve delivered gifts of wearables to him that he politely tucks back into the gift box and puts on a shelf until he changes zip codes. The Haflingers he likes. I like that.

When you first enter a crime scene, it takes a while to absorb what’s gone down. The office foyer was strewn in glass. Awards were missing from our company wall of fame. A wide hole of light pours through the broken Broadway facing window. Spikes of glass above the door point downward, held together only by the adhesive window tinting,

While investigating, the district police find the weapon of destruction, a river rock 8-inches in diameter.  We’re not the only business in our ‘hood hit. All told, three businesses suffered thousands in damage. But we are the only ones with video cameras that record the perp. The videos show him heaving the rock like a discus thrower through our office windows. Almost as if it were propelled by a rocket launcher, the rock blasts through the window and flies another 25 feet into the office, ricochets off the framed awards on the wall and striking the opposite wall.

If I’d not left for Dardano’s, the likelihood is that I would have been in the path of the rock as my main task at work that Saturday was to lug more than three dozen loads of boxes across the entry in the direct path of the rock. So it’s no exaggeration that Dardano’s saved my life.

While that’s probably not the kind of saving the day readers would expect this shoe blog to address, the Haflinger moccasin saves the day on multiple levels.  Nothing about this moccasin says “slipper” due to its loafer-like stitching. Made in the Ukraine, the moccasin is fashion-forward enough to wear to work on a casual Monday through Friday. Most significantly the padded wool felt fabrication spares the wearer from having to break in a shoe, right from the get go. If good looks and comfort are what your man feet demand, get yourself to Dardano’s and get into a pair of Haflinger moccasins. On sale now at Dardano’s.