Walk #36


27 April 2005
3:26 pm to 4:26 pm
Heads: 46
Tails: 45
Total intersections: 37
Ending point: 19 West Street (a.k.a. the West Side Highway)
Latitude/longitude: 40:42.21.12N/74:00.58.11W
Distance from home: 0.4764 miles
Literature received: Falun Gong Today (“Are your Chinese colleagues unwittingly spreading Beijing’s lies about Falun Gong?”).
Coin: 1997 Bermuda quarter

To see a larger version of the photo above (which I recommend), click here.

I walked out the door with aching bones and a pocketful of cough drops. Emerging into the sunshine, I headed south for a couple of blocks, then due east, almost making it to the water before turning south again, basking in the warm spring day as I walked.

I came to the end of the ferry terminal–a place that I never visited in the normal course of my day, but had become familiar with as the result of these random trips through my neighborhood. I went around the block three times, and watched a ferry pulling out for Staten Island. The black smoke of its engines mixed with the white froth of water.

I headed back north, and was walking on Chase Manhattan Plaza when bells started ringing at four o’clock. It was all very secular, but with the expensive art, open spaces, and golden doors, I felt like a peasant surrounded by medieval religious power.

I turned west, and walked in circles just south of the World Trade Center, feeling sweaty and a little dizzy–perhaps I was actually too ill to be walking around for a full hour. A rock band I didn’t recognize was checking into a fancy hotel. “Give me all the bags,” said one guy with a mohawk. A hot-dog vendor was contemplating his FDNY hat. I spotted a security guard who was a dead ringer for Will Ferrell. I couldn’t imagine that he had an easy time getting people to take him seriously on the job.