yesterday afternoon i took a walk to pick up a print order for work. i walked from where i work, on main street under the central avenue bridge, to washington avenue north in the warehouse district, where the print shop is. it is a walk thru the heart of the city, much of the walk along the mississippi river, which has to be one of the loveliest parts of the center of the city, in the center of its urbanness, and along that walk i ran into one other pedestrian until i got to washington avenue, where there were a few more.
it was 1:30 in the afternoon and a crisp day with temperatures in the teens, but it was very sunny, brightly sunny reflecting off the snow, and i thought that if i were in chicago or so many other cities i would be seeing so many other pedestrians on such a walk. in minneapolis, on my walk, i saw lots of cars, and they were going fast and close to me and i kept on thinking how vulnerable i was. if only one of those cars went just a little off kilter - there i would be - smush.
they say there is safety in numbers, and there are reasons that people say this. if i was not the only pedestrian, but one of many, i would feel much safer. the cars could be going just as fast, and just as close, but i would not feel as vulnerable. all the pedestrians would also probably cause those cars to drive slower because of all that people movement, and the patterns, all that would make the cars feel faster, so they would slow down for the situation.
but that wasn't the case, and i mostly walked alone on what for me was a lovely early afternoon. and i did get to my destination in one piece. i picked up the box of newsletters i had to pick up and walked a few blocks to catch a bus. it's a little awkward walking with that big box so i took the bus back to work. there were lots of other people on that bus. there was some safety in number in there.