Some of you may remember that I told you, that public transport was my second favorite transport mode. Well, here’s a story about my favorite transporte mode: Walking.
I hear you. Walking that’s weird and not even a real transport mode. But you know what, it is and I love it. When I hear people talking about cars, and how they feel totally free when they’re driving I usually cringe a litte. For me it’s the complete opposite. I do own a car, but nothing about it makes me feel free. There’s so many things you have to take care about like getting it checked regularly, paying insurance, getting gas, finding a parking spot, getting things repaired etc. etc. This doesn’t make me feel free at all. It feels more like a chain around me that ties me down and I don’t like it.
When I’m walking however, I feel free. It’s so easy and there’s really nothing much you need for it. If you are blessed with two healthy legs and are able to walk, you can just start in whatever direction you want to go. No delay, no parking spot, no expensive gear you need for it. All you need is yourself. This is what freedom feels like for me.
And to be able to walk, especially in a city, you need public space. A lot of public space is dedicated to individual transport and commercial areas though. And that makes me mad. I strongly believe that cities should be made for people and not for cars and companies. Cities should be a place for everyone and public space should function as a democratic space. This function gets lost though when we allocate public space to certain users and sell it out to companies. And this is what the song “Der Flaneur” is about.
I chose the term “Flaneur” cause it has this certain romantic flair of the 19th century to it. If you want to know more about what it means, there’s actually a pretty nice wikipedia article about it. His female counterpart would be “Passante”, which was mainly used as a synonym for prostitutes though, cause back then, women weren’t really supposed to stroll the streets alone like men did.
Now, I know that the song is in German, but maybe with the explanation on what the song is about, the feeling of the song will maybe tell the whole story, without understanding every word. As usual, here’s a first draft of the song:
If you’re interested in the lyrics and chords, you can download them here.