Further update to situation - thanks to helpful shop staff, I am now the much happier owner of a pair of black leather Gobi II shoes - men's, I'll add. The men's style was a smidgen wider, which cheered my toes up no end.
The Gobi Soul of Africas are both slightly narrower and longer in the toe than the regular Gobis, in both the mens and women's fit. I tried the men's 41's on out of curiosity and while they were super soft and a better fit for me than the women's version, the tip of the shoe was kind of long, leaving me with almost an inch of space in front of my big toe, so I thought they looked odd.
It's a shame that one of their premium models which is made from quality leather and is helping good causes in Africa is a bit of a troublesome fit, I really wanted a pair, but have to admit the black Gobis look better for an office job. If I want to wear something more colourful, I've already got blue Lucys, red Aquas....
Still haven't worn my VFF Speeds to work yet, perhaps I should one day, just for the comments. Or I could even try and sneak in with my Ninja-toed Freets.