Up@dawn 2.0

Sunday, August 28, 2016

Sidewalks (Phil 1030-H01)

  Five years ago, I traveled to Ventura, California to visit my brother and to see him graduate from high school. Two years later, I also traveled to southern Italy with several members of my family for a two week vacation. In California and Italy, I don’t remember a street that wasn’t also accompanied with a sidewalk. Thinking of our home town in middle Tennessee, my grandmother and I discussed the differences between these areas on Earth; one of them being the magnitude of walking accomplished. While in Italy, we walked from sunrise to sunset- partially because we were tourists and there were limitless sites to see, but natives were also continuously coming and going. During my stay in California, I walked to countless destinations and drove to numerous locations as well, but once our car reached point B, we only walked. At home, in Murfreesboro, vehicles were the number one way of transportation, walking from the parking lot and into the place of interest. 
     Compared to middle Tennessee, the cities in both southern California and Italy are more compact rather than the disperse layout of Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Perhaps, there is not a need for footpaths in Murfreesboro as its citizens drive because it would take too long to get to school, work, or to the grocery store. In the majority of regions within the United States, walking is not a principal system of transportation, but “…perhaps we do not walk because there are no sidewalks” (Orlet). With the incorporation of sidewalks, I believe personal lives could change- physically, socially, and mentally- for the better. 


  1. Kaite Berry H0110:20 AM CDT

    I agree with this wholeheartedly. Weeks ago I would have never said the same as I was one of the people who only walked from parking lot to the building but now that I have started walking more on campus, I can see great benefits from it that I put off before. I agree with you that sidewalks should be implemented in more places, allowing us to really see how beautiful the world is.

  2. (H3) Walking is probably one of the most beneficial activities people can do on a daily basis. It focuses the mind, strengthens the body, and producing a calming effect on the soul. My home town, Clarksville, TN, has been doing a lot of roadwork improvements over the last couple of years. I live off exit 8, which is also where my high school is located. Along with widening the road to a four lane they added sidewalks. Now students can walk or bike to school. I know it would have been great to have been able to walk to school, to enjoy those early mornings and actually wake up before being crammed into a stuffy classroom. I think it would have made me an even better student and conversationalist and I hope walking across MTSU's campus multiple times a day will prove me right.

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  4. (H3) I've similarly traveled to another country in the past, specifically the Philippines. It is a third world country with little infrastructure outside its capital. Many of its people walk to everywhere they need- schools, work, stores. This has a great impact to their lifestyle and thinking. The people I met in the Philippines were happy even though they made less money, some had no jobs, and they had few luxuries- no clean water, no cars, etc. Since better infrastructure and cars are usually found in first world countries, maybe countries with more poverty are liberated- being able to coexist in nature and have the freedom to think about things nonmaterial.

  5. H3
    Being a native from Murfreesboro, TN, i can see what you mean in that it is more of an inconvenience to walk everywhere as it takes 15 minutes driving just to get to the grocery store. However, I believe in the more compact areas of Tennessee, we should have sidewalks to nearly everywhere as it would be beneficial to not only our physical bodies but to our social lives, since it would be easier to meet new people and connect with our world, and to our mental well-being since it would provide the time that we need to slow down and think or just to let everything go and bring peace into our minds.