During one of the walks made with a retired person living in a working-class area nearby the Civic Centre who walks through this area 2 or 3 times a week on his way to the market – Piața Dacia –, we noticed that the built landscape does not attract his attention.
His usual journey seems to be a race against the clock with the main challenge being to find the fastest route without wasting time by bypassing different zones. Despite keeping a brisk pace while walking down, my interlocutor suddenly slows down and, surprisingly, starts to talk to us with excitement about how much he enjoys the roses planted around the Church. It seems that landscaping by planting flowers are elements that strongly impact his daily route to the market.
Based on his sayings we conclude that during his multiple walks to the market he has been very attentive about each stage of the rose planting and caring for process, invoking details regarding the rose species, planting period, methods of preventing them from freezing during the cold season, cutting and pruning methods. He even expressed his personal preferences, showing a liking for grafted rather than wild roses and differentiating these two types of plants based on leaf analysis.
Even when walking through the neighbourhood on timed routes, for a precise purpose, without paying attention to details, people will always come across elements that attract their attention and potentially slow down their walking pace transforming the walking experience into an enjoyable, always different experience. In other words, getting familiar with the neighbourhood and appropriation thereof may take subtle, personal forms of expression, which differ from observing the buildings, escalating mobility obstacles or adapting to the road traffic.