Hard to let go...
Have you ever had something so precious – yet deemed useless, scruffy or outdated by your peers – that you wouldn't dream of throwing away? For Charlie Coups, that seemingly irreplaceable item is a 10-year-old pair of Seeland wellies...
As a rule, I'm not usually one to put something off; an urgent job, paying a bill or that scary trip to the dentist. However, I have to admit, for the past year or so, I've continued to wear a pair of wellies that need replacing.
Incredibly, it must be getting on for 10 years since my Dad gave me a pair of Seeland wellies for Christmas and, like a well-trained spaniel, they have been my constant companion in the field, come rain or shine. I simply don't want to get rid of them.
Amongst friends and family, the top welly problems are always the same; they either leak, the zip has broken or the buckle has come off. Not ideal for a walked-up day in the rain. Whilst some have continued to shell out for a brand new pair every year only for that inevitable crack in the rubber to appear midway through the season, others have abandoned wellies altogether and opted for a tall walking boot, which do seem to be growing in popularity.
I feel rather smug that after 10 years my wellies have never leaked and all the fastenings are still perfectly functional. No, my problem is different...
The truth is, they squeak. I've walked so many miles – up and down hills, through maize crops, artichoke covers and thick bramble – that the neoprene has now completely worn away at the heel. Now, when I walk, it sounds embarrassingly like the pork pie at elevenses has had an adverse reaction to my gut – much to the entertainment of my fellow beaters!
Going to extreme lengths and trying to prevent the inevitable jokes, I now make sure I wear two thick pairs of socks in my wellies. This does seem to help for a while, but after several drives trudging over ploughed fields, the squeak always returns.
At the end of last season I made a point of declaring that I would have a new pair come September. I didn't. I'd even gone as far as trying on a few new pairs, but never actually made it to the till. The comfort and warmth of my trusty Seelands is unrivalled and its going to take a special pair of new boots for me to relegate this pair permanently to the boot-room (just in case)... You don't think I would throw them away, do you?!
More from the maker
Seeland Woodcock AT 5mm Boot
This boot includes all the innovative features we have come to expect from Seeland's award-winning handcrafted natural rubber boots – stylish appearance, lightweight, effective support and protection, great warmth and comfort. In the words of Seeland's head of footwear, Henrik Slot Nielsen; "A successful hunt builds upon a solid foundation. Seeland boots are that foundation”.
Seeland uses only the highest quality natural rubber to ensure durability, suppleness and comfort, even at the lowest of temperatures. An extra reinforced 5mm neoprene lining, which is 10 times stronger than conventional linings, ensures effective moisture transportation, feet that are both warm and dry, and a comfort rating down to -5ºC.
The Seeland afs footbed is developed with shock-absorbing silicone gel pads in the heel and forefoot for optimum fit. Its fully vulcanised outsole with stabilising glass fibre shank delivers superior grip and flexibility; a must when conditions are slippery and hazardous underfoot.
An athletic, snug fit, this boot is suitable for trousers and breeks, and comes in a dark green 18″ for men and a dark brown 16” for ladies, both of which are available at an RRP of £129.99. For more information and stockists check on line at www.seeland.com or ring 01844 237944 (south) 07912 934389 (north).