Tag Archives: walking

When Truth Hits You Like a Freaking Lightning Bolt Out of the Noonday Sky

woman in the hat selfie

woman in the hat selfie

I was walking today, just doing my tourism thing in Capitol Hill and walking in the general direction of my destination but not too set on it. Like, I’m open to other adventures and stuff because if traveling isn’t about having adventures then I’ll just go ahead and eat my socks.

So I was walking today and noticing how the buildings in my neighborhood are so put together and made of brick, and how they all kind of remind me of senators from the 17th-18th centuries or whenever they still wore wigs. And I was just walking along doing my thing when I notice some free stuff on the road, like there’s a cardboard box full of cookie cutters and a desk and then there’s also this hat.

It’s just a sunhat that’s Columbia brand and either dark khaki or light green but it looks like it’s in pretty good shape, and I have pretty fair skin and was planning to be in the sun all day so I thought this was a fairly wonderful find. I put it on and was so stoked about it and kept on thinking to myself, “I found a new hat!”

And I wore the hat around all day and it was kind of a funny thing, you know. Like, I don’t usually wear hats. In fact, I’m a little weird about them. I think the people who wear them have some sort of ego complex. I always think, “Who do they think they are wearing that hat? Where do they get off accessorizing to such a high degree?”

But today, I was the woman in the hat. I wore that hat around all day and loved it. But the thing is, if someone saw me today they would just think that I was a hat-wearer by nature and that this was just something that I do, even though nothing could be farther from the truth. They wouldn’t know the difference. They would just think, “There goes a woman in a hat.”  Or they wouldn’t think anything at all and would just continue on with their lives like I do when I pass people on the street.

I assume I see people the way they are, but the reality is I know nothing. I don’t know what they usually eat, what their friends are like, if they come around these parts often, or if they wear hats. I can only see them in one moment and in one place. Maybe she just got that tattoo against her boyfriend’s wishes. Maybe he’s had those shoes for six years and can’t bring himself to throw them away. Maybe she just got back from a 11 month trip around the world and is experiencing massive culture shock.

I don’t know. So that’s the truth that hit me today: that I am the woman in the hat and I don’t know. Also, my hat is pretty awesome.

P.S. The selfies are out of control

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Walking on Feet in San Francisco

I walked almost 8.7 nautical miles (10 miles) today in my Sperry’s and skinny jeans (no prairie dress yet). I wore a black jacket and sometimes it was a little too warm in the sun, but I liked having it for when I was in the shade. I tied it around my waist when I wasn’t using it. As the day wore on I talked louder and more often to myself, to the point where it was nearly a constant conversation, but I feel like you can do that here in San Francisco, where people can be who they want to be. I want to be a wildly gesturing person on the street wearing a puffy black jacket tied around her waist.

San Francisco is easily one of the most beautiful and livable cities that I have ever been too. I’ve been to cities in Morocco or Colorado, for example, that are beautiful to visit and quaint to look at but would likely be quite suffocating to live in, like beautiful quaint hands slowly closing around my throat. But San Francisco’s hands are not suffocating. They wear funky, locally made jewelry and make funny gestures. I like San Francisco’s hands.

When I am in a new city, I love exploring it on foot, without a map or an agenda, and that’s what I did today. I had made a halfhearted plan to go see stuff but then ended up wandering my day away, which I believe is always a good decision. There’s nothing I like more than the feeling of complete freedom, being in a city in the world with no agenda and the ability to follow any whim I have, like to poke around the campus of University of San Francisco, or to hunt down a church spire I saw gleaming far away, or to turn onto a random street because the trees look really fluffy or because the sunlight  is hitting it just right at the golden hour in the late afternoon when everything is beautiful and I have to follow the beauty.

Walking in San Francisco is unlike walking in other cities. I would be walking on a street lined by those beautiful houses that remind me of whimsically decorated gingerbread men and all of the sudden in the distance, the street ended in a crest, over which I could see nothing. Did the world end? Was there a breathtaking view of azure bay water? Yet another park? The urge to climb these hills was impossible to fight, and climb I did, and sure enough, I would be rewarded with a lookout into the distance, either towards more hills covered in trees with bright buildings clustered around the bases or the bay with its islands and other bodies of land reaching into it. I didn’t want to leave the crests.

In San Francisco flowers bloom in the winter. I like it here.

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