Walking to Work


I have a 15 to 20 minute walk from the train station to the office every week day morning (and back again in the evenings). How long it takes usually depends on how many other people are walking the same route and how many traffic lights I hit. I like to kid myself that it counts as exercise, even though I am not even raising a sweat. Occasionally though, the walk throws me a curve ball. This week I had two of them.

The first was a guy lying on the ground at a bus stop. Literally just lying there, flat-out like a plank. At first glance it looks like he was dead, he was that still. So here’s the question. Do I stop and give him a nudge and ask if he’s alright? No one else is stopping, there are two guys sitting next to him on a park bench who don’t even seem the slightest bit concerned and what if he is just a homeless guy who’s quite happy having a sleep on the ground? Well not happy, but that’s the best place he’s got and he’d rather sleep than be woken up.

I’d like to think that I am the kind of person who would stop and help someone in need, but in reality I’m probably not. I’m one of those people who’d end up on the news after heartlessly stepping over the dead person on the street. Mostly because I’m usually so far away with the fairies that I wouldn’t even notice that they were there. But this week I’ve noticed ‘out like a plank’ guy and I kind of feel I should do something, but I’m not sure and I’m curious as to why the bench guys haven’t done anything. Maybe they have already checked and know he’s quite happy lying there? Was he lying there when they sat down or did he lie down there afterwards? Does anyone actually sit down next to a guy lying on the ground without checking on him first? Somehow that seems so much worse than walking by. Not that someone doing worse makes my badness any better, but I take the salves to my conscience where ever I can get them.

Thankfully just as I am almost past still thinking – should I stop, or not – the guy woke up and started to stand up and resolved my dilemma for me. It left me with the sense that I am really a bad person because I wasn’t actually going to stop.

The second curveball was this.

2013-04-17 07.58.27 (768x1024)

It wasn’t there last week. For a moment I briefly held the thought that the government was being lovely and investing in public art, and then I went and had a closer look. According to the plaque it’s not new. It’s just been moved. So instead of investing in public art they are taking art they already have and plonking it down in the middle of where people walk. It smacks a little bit of shuffling papers on your desk so your boss thinks you’re working.

Ono a more positive note I am actually doing stuff, I have been sewing and have finished three table runners in the last week. Now I just need to figure out what I’m going to do with them.


2 responses »

  1. Hi, that (new to the Queen St mall) was from, I believe, the old Expo site and was secured by the council to go in to the mall. It’s been on the news sometime in the last week. I am quite pleased that it is now in the mall since it is a beautiful piece of art even if it is not new. I love seeing art like this in public places and yes, the council should invest in more of it.

    • Thanks Bern. I agree that we should see more art in public spaces. In this case the location for me is a bit jarring, but that could be because I’m used to the empty space and I wasn’t expecting it. It will probably grow on me as I get used to it in that space. I think on the plaque it said it had been in one of the parks up near Roma St. Hopefully they will find something to sit in the space that it has left.

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