ab at Anatum’s day 4 & 5


Second day of walking.
That day I continued on walking research adding a rule of landmarks. I established certain point in a city (as a skyscraper for instance) towards which I walked and once I reached the point I choose another one. Reaching points were choosen randomly not due to its height. By that I sometimes get a little bit lost because some of the points were not high enough (=
> not visible enough).
By that I visited random places and explored even the spaces where otherwise I wouldn’t go.
Again I was fighting with problem of private zones but other results was quite satisfactory. It was possible to go for something, to some exact direction and yet there was a moment of unpredictable and unknown.
In a way I become – and in my research I’m trying to be –
a flaneur „the man of leisure, the idler, the urban explorer, the connoisseur of the street.“ But in more exactly defined way – in my „flaneurism“ there is a specific method behind.

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Today I moved into cycling which get my city research in a way easier in a way more difficult.
I changed myself in some strange form of cyborg – half a man half a machine. My speed ability raised (but it was also possible to lower it again) and because of that I was able to act either as a human, either as a car.

Most of the time I acted as a car. So I was following the roads assigned for a cars and had to increase my awareness (due to the security reasons). The whole exploration became more dynamic and faster. So instead of enjoying each smell or noise I was attacked by different and frequently uneasily distinguisable impulses. I was passing through the pure Futuristic experience.

Among others I was working in a city center and was fighting with traffic jam. On the other hand there was a pleasure of long free rides in different localities.

When I dismounted a bike and walked for a while the perception changed completely. Used-to-be cyborg body changed into casual one and I felt like a disabled person.

When cycling the perception of a city as a physical entity remained and was more complex but less detailed.

ab at Anatum’s day 3

Today I decided to get out of Anatum’s Abode and extend my space exploration. I forbade myself to use any of public transport system so I was only walking.

An advantage of such an exploration is its closeness to the city as a physical entity. The city has its solid structure, it is possible to touch it, smell it, see it – in details. You realize if this physical entity is organized logically or not – you perceive its urbanistic execution. One might enjoy all the small (in)consonances,  even the tiny changes in atmosphere. The bigger ones even more of course. It is easy to stop for a while and to calmly observe some detail or to work with different speed of walking. Than your feeling is changing again – you might concentrate more on walking itself or try to absorb what surrounds you.

I realized – not for the first time of course – that city is divided into public and private spaces which leads to many difficulties for a walker (or biker, car driver … just the walker could feel the biggest discomfort as he is the slowest of these – so to overcome a wrong path takes him longer time).

Other problems for the walker might be the natural obstacles. Such as a river as I realized today. I walked cca 10 km more (! 5 km on the one side and 5 more when coming back on the other) than I planned because during my walk around the river there was no possible crossing (not counting Emirate Air Lines or Thames Clippers for which you have to pay). So I just walked and walked, looking for an underpath or bridge…and for quite a time there was no such a thing.

For more thoughts about walking and exploring the city see my further posts.
Good night 🙂


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