The Rainbow Connection

From a Saturday at 3:30 p.m. until a Friday at 10:00 p.m., I wore one pair of shoes, if I wore any shoes at all

In The Bahamas

Rainbow®️ Sandals

Rainbows as they are commonly called



Like probably millions since 1972, I have worn Mr. Longley’s Laguna Beach garage’s product of leather and nylon with supported arches and a touch of rubber on the sole.

For a week, as I tanned my toes in the Abacos, these shoes were all I wore.

In the water.

On the land

In every restaurant.

At every store.

From Pelican Cay to Great Guana and all points in between

I refrained from Rainbows in the airports, because, well, closed toed shoes are better

What shoe is more versatile

more recognizable

more collegiate

more beach

more dock

more pool

more boat

more sands

more suds

more surf

more dude

more DUDE

more outdoors

more indoors

more inshore

more offshore

more wearable 10 months of of the year in these parts

more wearable 12 months out of the year in these parts

more tan lined

more calloused prior to breaking in the nylon

more perfect

Last summer, over the 4th of July, someone took my pair and I took someone else’s at Pawley’s Island. Almost immediately, I knew they weren’t my Rainbows.

Still showing a little Bahamian white sand dust and place where tanned toes have left an imprint.
I need to sharpen that mower blade, too.

I knew they weren’t mine, as Rainbows conform to the individual owner’s feet almost as well as Birkinstocks

So, on July 6, 2021, I hightailed it to the local Rainbow retailer and bought a new pair

They are shown above after almost a year’s worth of wear

They still have the writing on the bottom of the soles. The leather is just starting to get to that perfect place of give. I will wear these until they fall to shreds, or, rather, until the tread on the soles becomes so slick that I will skid on any wet surface. That’s the true sign that it’s time to make another Rainbow connection

And, to say that these shoes are markers of a certain culture, well, they are. Totally, dude.

I judge people by shoes. Really. I can tell a lot from what a person has on her or his feet. It’s a thing.

If I see another pair of Rainbows, then I know that’s probably my people. And my peoples’ peoples

Your Rainbows shall be my Rainbows

Whatever thou wearest, I, too, shall wear

I still wonder who has my pair from Pawleys

Because they are my people

(Apologies to Ruth)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.