Here in Cornwall it is almost impossible to understand or remember why anyone would ever wear high heels. I think a counter-reaction has started, courtesy of Hadley Freeman:
Oh yes, this is the 21st century. Previously considered insurmountable barriers for women have been broken, glass ceilings shattered and exciting medical advances made daily. Yet when it comes to footwear, women seem to be voluntarily choosing to return to the days of footbinding, crippling themselves in the pursuit of neat little feet. You can't help remembering the times when women broke their ribs to narrow their waists. Plus ça change.
As you might have discerned by now, I am not a fan of high heels, never have been. In fact I've lost friends through wearing them, and I'm sure I'm not alone. The very few times I've reluctantly hoisted myself up into a pair for some social occasion, I've spent the entire evening grumpy, immobile and longing to leave. I hadn't even left the room at one such party when I heard an old acquaintance mutter - one who I haven't seen since, incidentally - "Christ, what's up with her?"
"Up" was the operative word in that question because I was up, all right - up about four-and-a-half inches in a pair of designer shoes I'd bought after having been promised that this label was the most comfortable around. Here's a hint: magazines and heel devotees often say things like, "Oh, you just haven't worn good heels. When you wear Manolo Blahnik / Jimmy Choo / Christian Louboutin shoes, you don't feel like you're wearing heels at all." They're lying. The only way you might not know you were wearing heels is if someone slipped them on your feet while you were sleeping, and even then they'd probably pinch you into wakefulness.