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This idea of the flaneur is fascinating. It describes some of my most vivid dreams, the ones in which I'm heading somewhere but I get distracted, the dream ending with a vague sense that I'm lost and fine.

Perhaps municipalities here in North America should fire planners and hire flaneurs. We generally have only pockets of places that might interest a flaneur, somone wishing to find "the perfect balance of destination and distraction." Some spots are good for an hour or two but not complete enough to possibly get lost in. Sort of heavily identified quaint zones.


Welcome to Sydney - happy navigating around its maze of streets. (BTW: I discovered this blog via Feathers of Hope)



As a planner myself, I would have to resist your suggestion. Though flaneurie should be part of the planner's discipline. For that matter, it would make a great competitive collegiate sport: compete to see who can act on the subtlest inclination. Not sure how you'd score it, though.


Having just returned from London, indulging in the most flagrant flanerie, I'm happy to see this, Jarrett.

Never worrying about getting "lost" because London is still skeletally familiar to me even after an absence of nearly 30 years, but delighting in the meandering I never allowed myself to do before. There were times when I'd hop on a bus (thanks to the Oystercard) to save my feet without really knowing where it would end up but not caring, either. (Wandering along the South Bank doesn't really count because there's such an obvious trajectory it doesn't encourage or even really allow, in a subconscious way, deviation from the River, but what a delicious thing to do on a Sunday afternoon...)

Hope you're settling in!


Dear Creature,

I've just come across your blog & like it a lot. I moved to Sydney from Melbourne 17 years ago and the first thing I noticed (along with the humidity and the sandstone) was the streets-with-no-logic. I just love them, although I miss all Melbourne's arcades (another flaneur's favourite!) Industrial wastelands have their own charms... there are some lovely meanders around Tempe (between the airport and the Princes Highway) that include 19th Century weatherboard cottages juxtaposed with piles of shipping containers.


for anyone who has the opportunity to do so, montreal is extremely flaneurable.

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Sydney is good city to visit. Me and my friend have planned small tour there. It was really difficult to find out a good spot but with the help of LMT , we get a good hotel at very good price. Now we are going there next week. :-)

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