You’re damn right it was a shopping opportunity.
Mauna Kea in Hawaii is the biggest mountain in the world. Take that, Everest. Actually most of it is under water which is why it doesn’t usually get a look-in, but at 13,796′ above sea level (it’s 33,500′ including the underneath bit) it’s still a beast.
The combination of height, the remoteness of the Hawaiian islands and its position means that Mauna Kea is one of the best stargazing sites in the world – and the fact that you can just drive on up and take it all in makes it even better.
You can read more about our adventures up the mountain here, but here’s what I bought in between drooling over space – no, not the Vans.
I was seriously taken with the design on all the Mauna Kea merch – ‘clearly the best’ is a loltimate catchphrase but the logo is just a really nice design, isn’t it? I’ll concoct a prize of some sort for anyone who can identify the stars on the print.
The Vans do have a bit of a story behind them too. I spotted this design ages ago and figured I’d just pick them up on the cheap somewhere in the US during our travels. I think I must have gone in every Vans store and skate shop in every city we went to, but no joy.
I eventually ordered them from Office when I got back… after a week they hadn’t shown up, but the last time I ordered from Office it took ages, so I wasn’t duly worried. After a while longer I did start to get slightly concerned and when I got in touch on Twitter we discovered the order had got ~lost in the system~. What kind of mysterious excuse it that, eh?
Credit where it’s due, their customer service team were pretty exceptional and not only did the shoes show up in a day but I got money off too. Thanks, Office!
Anyway, these two things are my favourite accessories in the world at the moment and if trainers and space don’t say ‘grown-up wardrobe‘ I don’t know what does.