Happy Birthday GT Hawkins Boots

January 5, 2014

In the years 1989 to 1995 I made many visits to Seoul to work with sales distributors. It often happened that Seoul was in the middle of a long Asian trip and I would find myself there over a weekend waiting to fly to the next country in my sales tour; Taiwan, Japan or China. On these weekends amongst other diversions I would take a taxi or the metro to Itaewon from my usual hotels, the Lotte, The Intercon, or the Shilla. And once I walked there from the Hyatt, which is nearby. Itaeown was and still is I assume, a shopping district close to the Yongsan US Army base. One could buy all manner of knock off goods, from Louis Vuitton luggage to Dior scarves and more. There was also a great choice of seconds. Seconds; genuine articles manufactured in South Korea either rejected for shipment or just somehow found their way to Itaewon.

One frozen Sunday afternoon I trudged up and down the street trying to stay warm as I looked for Christmas gifts. I cannot remember if I succeeded, but I do remember buying a GT Hawkins Bootspair of brand new boots. A pair of GT Hawkins dark maroon leather boots. The price was shown as $40. After some brief haggling the shop keeper let me have them for a little less. I put them on right away, I was that cold. In the box in which they came was some sales promotional material which claimed, amongst other benefits, that these boots were resistant to chicken manure. I have not been able to test that claim, but I have used and abused these boots in a variety of other ways over the twenty one years I have owned them. And now, apart from a tiny amount of leakage if I step into deep water, they are still warm and comfortable.

So Happy Birthday GT Hawkins boots! I hope I can enjoy you for a few more years yet. And indeed I will have to since the GT Hawkins company went out of business in 1995.


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