Stairways to Heaven

It’s official. I’m addicted to staircases. Luckily I live in a city that (apparently) thrived on building them back in the day so that now I can traverse my neighborhood and the neighboring nabes in search of these treasure spots.

Even more lucky? My neighbor has this book, which is like me having the book, so really the only thing I have to do is tie my shoes. And put on pants.

Should we drink every time I say nabe/neighbor/neighborhood? Catch up. That’s four drinks.

It’s fun to happen upon them randomly (which actually DOES happen when you’re a meandering wanderer like me). But there are also historical sets that might be kinda hidden, but are totally worth it.

Case in point:

Frankly, I was sold by the name alone. Sucker! Then I learned about them, and how they got the title. Turns out, they’re a key feature in the Laurel and Hardy short by the same name (minus “steps”). There’s a plaque and everything!

That tag is not historically relevant.

The steep flight features 131 steps. In the movie, Laurel and Hardy have to deliver a piano to a house at the top of the staircase. Hilarity ensues, but you don’t have to take my word for it.


Brief side note…can we acknowledge how much Donovan Scott of – if you ask me – Savannah Smiles* fame (Oh, Bootsie!!) looks like Oliver Hardy? Because he does, and not in just an “all chubby white guys look the same” way.

Ok…back to the stairs.

Here’s what they look like now:

Well, a stretch of them any way. I love that so many of these staircases have houses built along them. We all know I love houses and most of these are bungalows from my favorite era.

You might wonder why so many staircases? Well back in the 1920s, they led people from their houses in and on the hills to the trains and trolley cars down below. Having said that, now I walk through the neighborhoods and pick out houses that I love, and then try to imagine carrying groceries, or a baby seat, or a wriggling toddler or some combo of the three and I can’t. (I know they didn’t have baby seats back then, but you know what I mean…hands full.)

Then today I was talking with a fellow volunteer at 826 (post forthcoming) and he mentions he lives along the Music Box steps. Since I had recently completed that walk for the first time, it was very exciting. Like a secret society of stair climbers had been formed. He told me about the guy who leads regular walks through the area’s entire network (all 16. 2 miles and 4, 182 steps worth!). I told him that sounded a bit intense. Circuits of hundreds of stairs I can climb, 16 miles and 4-thousand steps?! Whoa.

Looks like I have a lot of climbing ahead of me.

Which reminds me of one of my favoritest quotes that just happens to be stair-related.

“Take the first step in faith. You don’t have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step.” Martin Luther King, Jr.

*Savannah Smiles. I love it so much. Once upon a time when I was a little girl my mom quit letting me watch it because every time I did I would want to run away.

Born and raised in the briar patch! I love the 80s.

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