Walking in the States

I enjoy walking. I can put up with most conditions, including humidity and strong winds. I think a 30 minute walk to work each morning is a great way to start the day. Fortunately for me, that is my current situation! I also try grabbing at least 30 minutes to walk during my lunch break, and then walk back home afterwards. That’s at least 1 hour 30 minutes walking each day! When I tell my American colleagues I walk to work each day, their responses are surprising!

“You walk 30 minutes to get to work? That must be a drag!”

I hear this one most regularly. A 30 minute walk is considered a long distance. This may be partly down to the fact that almost everywhere in America, everyone drives. Living in Manhattan may be the exception, but almost everyone who lives there can drive if required. I guess the expectation is if you can drive, you will. It is also probably because it has been very humid here recently; not really a good look to come in all sweaty. But nothing that air conditioning cant’t handle!

“That’s quite far. You can always take the bus.”

That’s true and is good to know. However, for us who enjoy walking in the morning and as a way to finish the day after work, the bus is not as appealing. Don’t get me wrong, I think buses are fine and do provide a useful service. However, by walking, as well as enjoying it more, I am also saving money and getting exercise. I would rather have that if it is only going to take me 30 minutes to walk!

These are the two usual responses I get. I do get the occasional “that’s not too bad” comment, but this still assumes that it isn’t ideal to walk anything over 5 minutes (I jest, but it is how it seems!). I also get offered a lift home if I happen to be walking with someone else leaving for the day. I thank them for the offer, but unless it’s raining, I take the longer, more enjoyable route.

Walking has always been a hobby of mine. Perfect for a practicing minimalist don’t you think?


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