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Westheimer Walk

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Hello. I am posting to let HAIF members know about my walk, to invite any of you who are so inclined to join me online as I do something fun and crazy and to meet me in person when I am finished.

I recently decided to walk the entirety of Westheimer in one day. I have been thinking about taking this 20 mile trek for a long time and I am really excited about it.

To answer your immediate questions - no I am not protesting something, no I am not raising money for a cause, no I do not need sponsors and no I have not gone insane (yet)! Why I am doing this is a little hard to explain but I will try.

In 2006 a writer for the Houston Press named John Lomax walked about 16 miles of Westheimer and wrote about his journey in this article - http://bit.ly/aXwanW. Later that year he walked a smaller portion of Westheimer again and has since walked many of Houston's thoroughfares including walking all the way from Intercontinental to Spanish Flowers restaurant.

John's walks really got me thinking about Westheimer, what it means to me and to this city, all the good, the bad and the ugly it has to offer. There is no other street in town like it, it is the artery that gives life to the entire West side and beyond. I have a thousand memories on that street from being a kid, through my teenage years to adulthood and on. I have driven it 10,000 times plus but have never walked it for more than a block. Why would I, no one in Houston walks anywhere, right? So . . . .

I will start walking at approximately 8am on Monday, April 26th out where Westheimer ends, 3.5 miles past West Oaks Mall where it turns into the west-bound feeder road of the Westpark Tollway. I will walk all the way from there to the starting point of Westheimer 20 miles away, where it turns into Elgin at the 527 Spur off Hwy 59.

I will finish my Westheimer walk at Saint Dane's Bar & Grill (http://bit.ly/IfEx8) on Elgin between Brazos and Smith. I’ve estimated I will arrive at Saint Dane’s at about 5pm but I'll get there when I get there. You are invited to meet me there to say congratulations, buy me a beer or give me a hard time for doing this.

I have done no real training or preparation for this undertaking. I did take a 2 mile sample Westheimer walk from Bagby to Shepard as I wanted to get a feel for walking such a busy (and potentially dangerous) street and get some kind of idea of how long the big walk would take.

I will be documenting my Westheimer walk with live Tweets & Twitpics as I go. You can check in on the action on the day of the walk as well as enjoy all the buildup and after-journey reports on my Westheimer Walk Twitter profile here - http://twitter.com/WestheimerWalk. You do not have to have a Twitter account to view my tweets and pics. If you have a Twitter account please follow me - @westheimerwalk.

I will also be taking pictures and making audio notes of my walk which I plan to fashion into a narrated slideshow and post when it is all over. I'm walking with a digital pedometer to record my steps taken, time elapsed, distance covered and calories burned.

Please feel free to forward this info to anyone you think might be interested and please be at Saint Dane's to greet me if you can. I look forward to seeing you and sharing some Westheimer war stories!


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