Yes it's a metaphor when traveling to far and foreign places.
(Or maybe you've heard the expression "When in Rome do as the Romans do")
The best part about the first day on a beach vacation is taking off your shoes and walking on the sand. The worst part is the sand from the beach stuck between your toes at the end of the day. Instead of neurotically trying to control the situation and constantly cleaning your feet, giving in to the new habitat will be far more rewarding.
Go to Local spots, Eat Local, and Dress Local
(this is not about the Brooklyn Local, Organic Movement ;)
Enjoying and embracing a new culture actually can be made better with proper footware. No joke!
Discovering Kork Ease a few years ago made all warm weather traveling that much better. They are style and function in one. The sandal style works with all warm weather outfits, and the wedge makes long walking tours in a European city or dancing late night in a beachy Thai club more tolerable and graceful. I also like the way my bum looks in a wedge/heel.
While packing for this trip I thought of a great video I once saw about a girls shoes which are animated and all wait eagerly in her closet to see which she will choose to go out into the world. I have a feeling all my other shoes are jealous of the Kork Ease because when I'm packing light, these sandals always win.
Ari's sandals are obviously not wedges but win the cool hippy award. Nomadic State of Mind sandals are the hippest bit of footware for dudes on an island or just in a... nomadic state of mind.
*don't forget sunscreen on your feet when kayaking because no shoes will feel good when those guys are toasted!