I love walking, but I like to walk SOMEWHERE. That’s something I miss since our move from an urban neighborhood with sidewalks and shopping, parks, and more within just a few blocks, to a suburban home on a dangerous road with no sidewalks at all and no safe way to get to the restaurants and stores that are only about a mile away. Walking is great exercise, but treadmills and tracks are so boring. Even the two mile loop at Lakeshore Park gets old.
So I really enjoyed my two long walks, one yesterday and one today, that I took as part of my birthday escape/retreat to downtown Knoxville. Yesterday evening I walked down Gay Street, across the Gay Street Bridge, (I could smell the barbecue wafting up from Calhoun’s below—yum!) past the now more or less abandoned Baptist Hospital, and back across the Henley Bridge (that’s its official name, you know—not the Henley STREET Bridge.)
I crossed Henley Street at the end of the bridge and walked down to the UT parking lot at the head of the Second Creek Greenway. I climbed the stairs to the pedestrian bridge across Cumberland and into World’s Fair Park. There I got a real treat. I knew Volapalooza was in progress but I didn’t expect to enjoy it! I loved every song I heard from the band that was performing as I made my way past the South Lawn, through the Tennessee Amphitheatre, and up the stairs to the Clinch Avenue Viaduct. I stayed on the viaduct for quite awhile, listening, and envying the residents of the Candy Factory, sitting on their balconies and enjoying a free concert. I investigated the lineup for the evening later and discovered that the band is Flogging Molly, and now I want some of their CDs for Mother’s Day.
After that I climbed the stairs to the pedestrian bridge that crosses Henley Street and returned to base.
Today I took that bridge again and went through World’s Fair Park a slightly different way, by the Convention Center and Sunsphere and across the bridge by the fountains. I don’t know who was having their prom at the Convention Center this evening but I certainly enjoyed looking at all the finery and picture taking. I went back over Cumberland and down to the Second Creek Greenway, which I followed across Neyland Drive. Then I walked along the river, through River Mountain Park, past Calhoun’s, through the Treaty of the Holston Park, and into the parking lot for Ruth’s Chris Steak House until I reached the building that once was the Gateway Visitor Center (bad idea) and currently is the KAT office (who knew?). I was hoping that the elevator up to Hill Avenue would be accessible and operational and, Glory Be, it was! So I got a boost back up from the river, and my walk back included views of James White Fort and Blount Mansion.
I got a lot of exercise (my legs ache!) and I had a lot of fun.
I once was planning to write a blog called “Walking in Knoxville” and I’m going to incorporate some of my plans for that blog into this one. Do you like to walk for exercise and/or pleasure? Do you have any favorite walks?