“Safety tip. When you see smoke run, never wait for fire.”

The wind was so fierce this morning it tipped my cow. Since then, though, the wind has disappeared. During the night we had rain. I only know because the streets are still wet. The sky is cloudy, but the sun shines through. I think it will be a nice day.

When I was a kid, we walked everywhere in winter. We walked uptown to the movie theater, to the corner store when my mother needed bread or milk, to school every day and to church on Sunday. My bike stayed in the cellar, its winter headquarters. Bringing it up the cellar stairs and back again took a finesse born from years of practice but not worth a short ride. Always walking never bothered me. It was what we did.

When I was in high school, I was in the parish drill team. I walked to practice and walked home, in the dark. After had an evening competition, we’d get back really late, but I still walked home. I never thought about danger. I never worried. Many times a few of us walked together, not for safety but because we lived near each other.

In Ghana I walked everywhere in my town. Most people knew me. A young white woman is not easily hidden or disguised. It didn’t matter the time of day or night, I felt safe in my town. It was the same in Accra, the capital. We walked all over the city and sometimes I even walked by myself. On any trip to Accra, a two day affair if I stopped in Kumasi or around 14 hours straight on, I’d meet the volunteers staying at the hostel, and we’d go out together, not for safety but to socialize, to catch-up as it was months in between seeing each other. It was always a surprise as to who was at the hostel.

Now, I would never walk at night in Accra unless I was part of a bunch. That city is like every other city, filled with people and cars, but I love walking in the daytime, in the bustle that is Accra. I still walk in Bolga though not very far because of my back, not because of concerns for my safety.

Though time has eroded safety, I still walk if I can, especially when I travel. The sights are best at eye level, here on the Cape with the ocean and in Ghana with all of it.

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14 Comments on ““Safety tip. When you see smoke run, never wait for fire.””

  1. Bob Cohen Says:

    Hi Kat,
    I moved from Dallas to the borough of Queens in NYC when I was 13. NYC had a fabulous public transit system I had no fear riding the subway all over the city and walking everywhere in the “safe parts” of the city with out any fear. I stayed away from minority’areas such as Bedford Stuyvesant in Brooklyn and Harlem in upper Manhattan.

    Today folks in my middle to upper class mostly white neighborhood, Preston Hollow, are scared to death of the few homeless people who wonder into the neighborhood. They get on the website, Next Door and complain about those homeless people or minorities who must be up to no good. The chief of Police reminded our neighborhood crime watch that being homeless is not a crime. Unfortunately, implicit predjudices continue to infect white people.

    After the cold front passed Friday night it has warmed up to 60 degrees under clear skies.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Bob,
      We used too have to take the bus to Sullivan Square. From there we could take the T into Boston. I think I was also around 12 or 13 when I’d go into Boston with my friends. All the things we wanted to see were in safe parts of the city.

      The homeless people on the cape tend to be in Hyannis, and there are complaints. I don’t see the homeless when I shop downtown. I think they are elsewhere but still near down town.

      This week we’re going to have 40’s during the day and 30’s at night.

  2. Hedley Says:

    Safety tip…when the Chiefs are down 24 at the end of the first quarter….DONT PANIC

    • Hedley Says:

      Uncle Eric throwing beer and going prime time across America

      • Hedley Says:

        Uncle Eric is trending across America for his Stone Cold Steve Austin touchdown celebration. Even Austin has posted it on social media ..Instagram and Twitter. Over 200,000 have seen it in one hour

        On the the Championship game and a chance for the Superbowl

      • katry Says:

        I actually saw that replay!

    • katry Says:

      I didn’t watch, but I never panic if the score is down by 24 for the Pats.

  3. Hedley Says:

  4. olof1 Says:

    I walked a lot too back in the days and I always felt safe even when I walked through the more rough nrighborhoods. There were some gangs, mostly neonazis, that would hunt down anyone unless one had two 100 pounds dogs walking with you 🙂 🙂
    Later on I biked everywhere as long as there was no snow on the ground.

    Now days I live so far from everything that I must use the car.

    Have a great day!

    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      I could walk all over if my back didn’t hurt. I miss walking.

      The cape has a bike trail which doubles as a route for walkers. It goes almost all the way up and down the cape. You’d love it for bike riding.

      Have a great day!


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