Unique Streets: 35
Miles Walked: 7.64
Street Names (italicized have been walked on another day): N. Charles Street, Maple Avenue, Pusey Way, Goshen Street, Hazelton Street, Swindell Bridge, Magnet Street, Brule Street, Wurzell Avenue, Burgess Street, Osgood Street, McIntyre Avenue, Lyzell Street, Lawton Avenue, Bark Street, Suffolk Street, Peekskill Street, Glenrose Street, Biggs Avenue, Lafayette Avenue, Marsonia Street, Hood Way, Olive Street, McNaugher Street, Letsche Street, Federal Street Extension, Seabright Street, Koerner Avenue, Mercy Street, Belleau Street, Belleau Drive, Sandusky North Street, Sutton Street, Catoma Street, Hargnette Way, Denham Street, Lanark Street, Fineview Avenue, Myler Street, Lee Street, Warren Street, Jay Street, Henderson Street, Sandusky Court, Federal Street, Jefferson Street, Lane Way, Arch Street, Arch Street Extension, Perrysville Avenue, Clayton Avenue, University Avenue, Langley Street, Honduras Street, Divinity Street, Lithgow Avenue, Cutler Street, Cheese Street, Maywood Street, McKees Lane, Canter Way.
On another unbelievably sunny and warm day in October, I parked in Perry South to walk a bit. A bit turned into a lot. And then I bit it. More on that later.
I headed towards the neighborhood near the Swindell Bridge which spans the culvert through which 279 runs.
The neighborhood is surprisingly sylvan.
The bridge is long and high and if it had been windy, I probably wouldn’t have walked across it.
Soon, I found myself in Fineview which was fine because there were still some streets to walk there.
I took advantage of the Fineview Fitness Trail for a while.
The views were more than fine and kept on coming.
Usually when I walk, the animals notice me. Dogs bark, squirrels chatter, and cats run. But lately, I’ve been having great luck finding kitty friends. This guy was named Gus and he was the sweetest cat I’ve ever met.
He came running down the sidewalk towards me so I sat down. He immediately climbed into my lap. After about 5 minutes of petting, I told him I had to go. He wanted to come too.
I told him I had a lot further to walk so he better stay. Eventually he did stop following me and I went on my way.
Pretty soon, I found a pseudo neighborhood I’d never heard of.
At this point, I was very close to my car. I should have gone back. I REALLY should have. But I didn’t.
This magnificent church is for sale if you’re in the market! It even comes with its own haunted school house!
After admiring the church, I took Federal Street Extension down to Mercy Street and then I climbed a massive set of stairs back into Fineview.
The view was absolutely worth it.
The views of downtown from this attic window must be breathtaking.
Being the glutton for punishment that I am, I kept going down. You see, i was getting hungry. I disregarded the fact that I’d already walked 5.4 miles and was still going down.
I passed by Randyland and I decided that a sandwich from the Mayfly Market in the Central Northside was in order. I got a delicious pulled BBQ chicken sandwich on challah with kale, slaw, and pickles. It was delicious.
As I was eating, I realized I had no less than 2 miles to my car and it was straight up hill. Ughhhhhhhh.
I walked up Arch Street and found the Arch Street Extension stairs that would lead me to Perrysville Avenue.
The stairs were never ending and I swear this one girl passed me twice going up them.
I finally got to Perrysville and realized there was still a lot of climbing to do.
As I slowly trudged my way up, I admired houses that had more amazing views of the city. Turns out, the sides without the views were still quite beautiful.
Finally, I found myself about two blocks from my car. I marvelled at the precipitous brick hill that is Cutler Street.
And then I found some stairs that Google Maps labeled as Cheese Street. Usually, stairs are named after a street that turns into them. There is no Cheese Street in the vicinity and the historical maps call these stairs McKee Lane. I resigned this naming to a mistake by Google Maps or maybe a darker force was at play.
The wooden steps through the woods ran from Perrysville Avenue to Burgess Street. They weren’t steep but wooden stairs under a cover of trees can be slippy. They were covered with a dark mossy film and I took great care as I started down them. As I descended, I saw woods to my right and a set of rowhouses to my left. The duplex closest to the stairs had a postage stamp-sized backyard that was filled with garbage. Plastic bags, cups, buckets, kitty litter trays, painting trays, even a fridge drawer covered the entire surface. The wooden back door had been broken open by force and now hung from the frame in two pieces.
The top half of the dirty glass in the second floor window was shattered. Through this opening, the peeling paint on the walls was visible from behind a door hanging halfway off its hinges like a loose tooth. I was captivated. I took a few pictures of the scene and felt the uncanny sensation of being watched. I was being nebby so maybe it was just my guilt. Still, I was a bit spooked.
I continued down the stairs towards the sunlight of this beautiful day when I reached the last step.
You would have thought I was Charlie Chaplin stepping on a banana peel. My right foot slipped up and carried my entire leg with it. Then, my left leg followed suit. My water bottle and phone went flying in opposite directions and I floated in the air for what seemed like minutes. I came crashing down on my behind while my middle back met the bottom stair with such a force that I think my soul left my body. I sat there as the wet mud I’d landed in seeped into my pants. Did I break something? Can I move my legs? I didn’t fall in Poison Ivy did I? Finally, I was able to get up but standing straight was going to be an issue for days, maybe even weeks to come. I found my tossed items and tried to clean the mud off of me as best I could. I crossed the street and turned to look at the house by the steps one last time. Did a mischievous ghost push me?
After my fall, I hobbled to my car on the most direct route possible. I ended up getting X-rays the following Monday because it hurt everytime I breathed. Thankfully nothing was broken but I had to take a break from walking for about a week.