walk¹ / wők / vi (of a biped) to move along on foot with alternate steps, the walker always having at least one foot on the ground.
stroll / strōl / vi to walk at a leisurely pace; to saunter; to wander from place to place [Perh Ger strolchen (obs strollen), from Strolch vagrant]
wander / won'dǝr / vi to ramble or move with no definite object, or with no fixed course, or by a roundabout way [OE wandrian; cf Ger wandern; related to wend, and to wind]
wanderlust / won'dǝr-lust / n an urge to travel or move from place to place. [Ger, wander-longing]
flâneur / flä-nœr¹ /n a person who saunters about, a stroller. [Fr flâner to lounge]
psychogeography / saɪkəʊdʒiˈɒgrəfi / n the study of the precise laws and specific effects of the geographical environment, consciously organized or not, on the emotions and behavior of individuals.
today is the first day of a project i've been planning for a while. taking a grid square, from the stoke-on-trent edition of the A-Z series, at random, my plan is to walk the perimeter of the square repeatedly over the next 12 days in a sort of "flanneur-istic" performance. i plan to perform the walk twice a day at corresponding hours, so day one will be 1 in the afternoon and morning, day two at the two two o'clocks and so on.
over the course of the twelve days i hope to see a comparison in the look of the city at the differing times of day. i hope to explore different ways of looking at the same part of a city and moving around the same part of the city. i'm starting with the arbitrary perimeter ascribed by the A-Z, but that's about the only rule.
for this first walk i settled on the idea of 24 which references not only the 24 hours in the day which is at the heart of this work, but also refers to photography - one of the exposure amounts you get on 35mm film. as a kid, i was always aware of the impending arrival of the 24th and final shot.
day one walk one
it's 1 o' clock. it's a sunny day. i'm standing in cannon place, in cannon street, at the bottom left hand corner of the grid square, and start to walk towards hanley, across a half full car park. i cross over a duel carriageway and head straight on around the tesco superstore. i turn right, up some steps and walk along the walkway in front of the store. up another set of steps and i reach mersey street, the top left corner of the square. i cross marsh street south and walk up pall mall, turning left onto piccadilly and right onto cheapside. i walk to the end of cheapside with the town hall looming in front of me. i turn left onto albion square and walk along in front of b&m, argos and black's camping store before reaching charles street, the top right hand corner. straight down charles street and across the bus station, reaching birch street. i reach the roundabout on lichfield street and head down the bank, passing john street and regent road, turning right into ephraim st, before arriving at the bottom right hand corner of the grid square, ogden street. walking up ogden street and turning left onto regent road, right onto lower bethesda street and left onto potteries way, i reach hinde street car park and turn right, crossing the car park, passing norsac community centre on my left before reaching cannon street and turning left and walking the 100 yards back to the starting point. it's quarter past two and i've walked the perimeter of the grid square. it seemed more like a circle than a square.
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