The sun beat hot and the humidity hung like plastic wrap. The blisters on my heels and toes had grown so fat it felt like I was stepping on cherries. I’d been on the road, on foot, for 11 hours, walking from Tampa to St. Petersburg and back, to … to what? I had no idea.
The project I had pitched to my editor seemed simple enough: For one week I’d shun my car and walk everywhere — to work, to the grocery store, to the park with the kids. I’d set off on a quest for answers.
Is it possible to live a normal life on foot in a car-centric place where so few walk? Can the walker survive — thrive even — in the second most dangerous place for pedestrians in the nation? Are there experiences in the city that can only be had on foot?
Even more elemental: Why don’t we walk anymore? And what have we lost?