Nobody walks in Florida

Go for a walk in Florida and you risk being stopped by the police. That was the experience of Viktor, my friend and colleague from Germany.

We were at a work conference in Florida back in February.  The conference was about 40 miles north of Orlando, in a pleasant area covered with orange groves and lakes.   The roads were surprisingly good for cycling.

But like in many places in the U.S., you can’t really walk anywhere.

Viktor, being a good European, wanted to go for a walk after the day’s meetings and before dinner.  So he left the hotel complex and  started to walk along the main road — a 45mph state route.   This apparently was an odd enough occurrence in Florida that the police pulled up and asked what was wrong, and whether he needed help.

“Just going for a walk”, didn’t seem to satisfy them, and they were insistent on giving him a ride … somewhere.

By definition, there must have been something wrong, because no one in Florida would “just go for a walk” out on a main road.  (They apparently didn’t consider that was the ONLY place he could walk, given his starting point).

Once you get beyond this as a good source for jokes … it’s discouraging to consider that this is the sort of mindset that would need to be overcome in order to make more pedestrian- and bike-friendly areas in the U.S.

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1 Comment

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One response to “Nobody walks in Florida

  1. Jim

    Nice tha you are back. Now, keep up the good work.

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