Sunday, September 30, 2012

Two famous roads.

 Baldwin Street, at Dunedin's Northern end is reputed by the Guinness Book of Records  as being the steepest street in the world.   35% gradient = 1:2.86  You are advised against taking a car up the street so no cheating please. It is a very invigorating walk to the top on a cold day. Only about a ten minute walk but you can sure feel it.
At its maximum, the slope of Baldwin Street is approximately  (19° or 35%) - that is, for every 2.86 metres travelled horizontally, the altitude rises by 1 metre.

In 1977, I went to San Francisco to visit my Aunty Teresa. She took me to Lombard Street and told me that it was the crookedest road in the world.

Sometime in the 80s, Dunedin, a city in the South Island of New Zealand did their survey and challenged Lombard Street for her title. I was thinking it was happening all again, a small little flea challenging a giant. Back during the Prime Minister David Lange's time, New Zealand refused to let American Nuclear power come to NZ waters. We were known as the flea.

Now, I notice they changed the title. The Dunedin street is the Steepest, and and Lombard is crookedest (most winding) street in the world . I had been to both, but unfortunately no photos. So when my old friends Ning and Vanny posted the photos when they went to Dunedin, I asked them for it. Ning said you can walk up and  pay $2 and get a certicificate. 

I told Ning, I would happily pay $20 for it. I remember the trip we took together with our flatmates to New York, climbed all the way up the Statue of Liberty and no photos or certificates for our effort.

One year, when my friend A. came to visit me, I drove her to Auckland university and by accident, we drove to a very crooked road. This is unknown because it is a small through through the middle of the park next the Justice building, and it didn't count because they blocked off the end of it. It required great skill to drive down the slope.

I emailed my siblings and Henry sent me this pix taken when he was in San Francisco and the Lombard Street.

When Elley and I were traveling into Los Angeles, we met an old man who started chatting with us. Little did we know that he was the father of a celebrity. When his daughter appeared, he proudly asked her to take the photos with us, so that's how a paparazzi took our photos together. To our surprise, she was Benu Mabhena.  Henry.

***I left my heart behind in San Francisco for the Giant crab bought at the Fisherman wharf, the big strawberries in my aunty's garden and the artichokes at the market


Rinkly Rimes said...

I have walked that NZ street so I can vouch for the exhaustiveness of it. (New word) Visiting your lovely country (from Oz) has always been a pleasure.

Ebie said...

I have been to Lombard Street, and it was a little incline too.

Anonymous said...

That looks very crooked!