General

People walk in this place like the way a gas fills a jar; no matter how few of them there are - all the space will be taken. It's like they are programmed to get as far from one another as possible, make no eye contact and move fast. This city is so much safe than my home according to the statistics, yet they behave like everyone they meet is a potential danger.

Urban

I love crowds. I love the way people walk, roughly in one direction, weaving a little, chatting as they go. I watch them, some heads down and lost in thought and wonder what their private worlds are like - each of them viewing this same place, this same day, from a unique perspective. Some of them notice the sun, others the cloudy remains of yesterdays rainstorm. Either way their footfalls soothe me better than a flowing river. I'm a city girl and always will be.

Urban

Today is rainy day walking - every person with their head down and moving at maximum speed. Those with umbrellas take wider berths of one another, the rest take care to duck when the spokes come their way. The sound of feet on wet paving stones is almost lost against the splashing of the traffic, only the click of high heels still clear. The usual smell of the fumes is dampened by the hazy drops and every face is on the blank-stressed spectrum - at 7:30 am it's always the same.

Urban

On these fine balmy days the city folk strut. Gone are the heads down bustles of the winter time, every figure clad in thick duffle or dark wool. Now is the time they walk in tight fitting clothes and show off the physiques they sweated for in those darker and wetter months. Almost every eye hides behind sunglasses and hair flows freely in the breeze.

General

People walk to the terminal so differently. Some almost skip, so exquisite is their joy of leaving for another shore. Others walk as if they are boarding a badly kept bus, no more exciting than any other commute. Then there are the nervous ones, quick steps and stern faces, everything about them tight and fearful.

Dystopian

Ten years ago we smiled as we walked, now I weep inside for those times passed. People walk like soldiers even to buy wheat and vegetables, eyes hard, mouth set in a grim line. When I was a child we beamed at everyone, friend and stranger. We slapped backs and shook hands, chatted over glasses of pale tea and wished God's blessings to one another. Where have our souls gone? It is as if they have been driven so deep into the person that they cannot surface at all, even within our families as they used to. Is this living? Or just survival?

General

You know the pubs are out when the streets are full of folks who walk as if the ground is the deck of a storm-tossed boat. Each foot comes to the sidewalk as if the collision of shoe and concrete wasn't entirely anticipated and the person lurches, stumbles. The sober ones stride like the only adults in a party of infants, shepherding them to a car ride home.

General

It's not everyday you see a penguin and it's damn near impossible to see a man in a penguin costume waddling along the sidewalk. His tail swished from side to side and every one in a while he would give a little squawk. I stopped dead in my tracks and watched open mouthed and he waddled past me, giving me a little honk of recognition. I shook my head and resumed my jogging. It really wasn't everyday you see a penguin.

By Lilith Montana, February 21, 2014.