Monday, February 08, 2021

yesterday's walk

I'm convinced that spring is arriving early this year.  I walked down to Bundang yesterday—Sunday—and the weather was almost warm.  The 17.5-kilometer walk took me a little more than 3.5 hours, which put me on track for a pace of about 4.8 or 4.9 kph, which is close to normal, and almost exactly 3 mph.  Stepwise, the walk took a little over 26,000 steps, which meant that my step rate was fairly high:  over 7,000 steps per hour, or 120 steps per minute, i.e., about 2 steps per second.  I normally walk at around 100 steps per minute, 5 kph, which makes calculation of rates, times, and distances fairly easy.

My higher step rate may have been a function of competitiveness.  There were tons of people out on the walk with me yesterday, which was a downer for my introverted self, but I often found myself speeding up in an effort to race past this or that knot of slowpokes.  Almost every single person was masked up; I think that, of the hundreds of people I saw on the path, only one or two might have been partially or wholly unmasked.  The heightened mask usage is doubtless because of recent mandates that make it a fineable offense to be caught outside without a mask on.  I find this injunction utterly ridiculous, and whenever I go distance walking, I never wear my mask, although I do keep it in my (unsanitary) pocket.

I didn't take any walk photos because I've done this particular route so many times.  I should have, though:  there was a lot of new construction going on along the path, and there were a few spots of graffiti that caught my eye.  One graffito said, in English, "They cake is a lie."  Next to it was a Bansky-style stencil image of a cake.  Farther down the path, the same graffito was repeated several times as a stack of misspelled sentences ("They cake").  I got the impression that someone was in the grip of an idée fixe.  I also saw a huge plastic Jersey barrier (the kind you fill with water) that had what appeared to be weird runes spray-painted on its surface.  I regret not taking pics of that because the symbols didn't look random, and I vaguely thought about researching them online.  Well... the next time I pass that way, I'll take all the pics I should've taken yesterday.

All in all, it was a good, brisk walk, albeit too crowded.  But winter is ending, so the fair-weather pussies are increasingly out in force.  I no longer have these paths to myself.

ADDENDUM:  I forgot to note that it's obvious this country isn't taking many pandemic-related measures seriously.  Although people were faithfully masking up, there was no social distancing to be seen among the clumps of people I passed on the path to Bundang.  I took the subway back home at the end of my walk, and there, too, there was no social distancing.  People have a commonsense understanding of the situation, and they'll figure things out for themselves, given the chance.  Regulations perceived as stupid get ignored.

ADDENDUM 2:  a pic of a crowded market.  Karens would shriek that this is a superspreader event.  Most Koreans would shrug in response.  Yeah, whatever.


John Mac said...

It seems like we march at a similar pace, at least on flat ground over short distances. I usually do the 7000 steps an hour at least for the first 8K or so. I'm trying to recall if I slowed you down that time we did our river hike?

I'm seeing a growing trend here in the PI as more and more people are ignoring the government's entreaties re: COVID. The citizenry seems to be waking up to the fact that these measures are bullshit and they are moving on with their lives. I really notice it on the beaches every weekend.

I wear my mask on my chin sort of as a FU demonstration of compliance. I can pull it up whenever I spot law enforcement or need to enter a place of business. That seems to be a growing trend here as well--situational compliance.

Kevin Kim said...

You walk faster than I do, so if anything, I slowed you down.