Sometimes you just want to walk. After a day’s thinking, conversation and writing, you just want to walk.
It’s dark now, like it’s mostly dark. The street lights not long turned off as I walked into university this morning. And now, I’d guess, they’ve been back on at least a couple of hours. ‘The darkling’ I’ve always called this, the time of shortening days. Which is one of the reasons I’m walking even more than usual.
To be out and moving, straining my phone’s ability to capture this walk. Blurring the movements of cars and people. Walking home through the urban dark.
This has become my new ritual walk over these past twelve weeks of university life. Mornings and evenings, my spaces in the day for whatever I need. Sometimes to think, to plan, to sort something out. Others like now for the walking. Sometimes you just want to walk.
Wherever I’ve lived or stayed there have been ritual walks, usually circular and taking at least half an hour. Long enough to think and short enough to be fitted into the busiest of days. This one’s a ‘there and back again’ walk. A different looking experience in its opposite ways round. In its morning and in its turned about evening.
I seem to slow down when I’m nearly home. Not because I don’t want to get there, necessarily. Though I do like a slow walk. After all, the street never looks the same twice if I take the time to look at it today. The time it takes to take these photographs. Walking home.
The time to see the cluster of others waiting at the Lodge Lane crossroads. How the still empty homes seem so much emptier in the dark. The Asda and Aldi lights looking like the road’s lit up for Christmas. The Smithdown choice of eating at the Mei Sum, Naked Lunch or Tiny Rick’s? And thanks for the little passage left for us to walk through, big silver parker on the pavement.
Sometimes you just want to walk.
(And here, the same walk, done the opposite way one morning!)