"Everywhere is walking distance if you have the time." —Steven Wright
Sometimes it seems that leisure is as exhausting as work, demanding the same attention to scheduling, equipment and financial resources. For this summer guide, we wanted to celebrate aimlessness, which is not the same thing as wasting a day (although it certainly can be).
We asked our writers to make trips to nowhere in particular around the Triangle, using, if possible, an unusual means of conveyance. By shaking off our usual habits and abandoning our customary vantage points, we hoped to find insights into our seemingly picked-over, over-familiar habitat.
It was an opportunity, too, for us to indulge in time-intensive activities with no clear outcome in mind, other than grist for a short article. Call it the purposeless, undriven life.
Certain ideas were ruled out: Train-hopping was too dangerous and too illegal. Hot air balloons were considered but discarded due to an evident balloon shortage. An extended, aimless ramble via pickup truck was deemed too-not-green; a Prius was substituted.
Like the blind men and the elephant, all of our writers found themselves confronting unique features of the sprawling, belching, complex organism we call the Triangle.
Fortunately, it isn't strictly necessary to rely on indirection and whimsy to find things to do this summer. Appended to this package is a lengthy, reasonably comprehensive directory of this season's cultural offerings.—David Fellerath