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Imagine you're walking on a pedestrian path, you see a shady person coming towards you and you cross the street to continue walking on the other side. In German, there's a short and easily comprehensible phrase for this:

die Straßenseite wechseln

but I can't think of an English equivalent - "change street side" brought no google results and doesn't sound right.

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    I don't see the shortcomings of "cross the street," an expression you used in this question. What's the short and easily comprehensible German phrase? – Chaim Mar 15 at 16:56
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    If I am walking home and there is a dirty guy talking to himself and cursing a lot, I cross the street. That's as short as you are going to get. – Michael Harvey Mar 15 at 17:17
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    In British English "cross the road" would be common – Chris H Mar 15 at 17:28
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    It would be great if you could provide the German phrase. – Lordology Mar 15 at 19:01
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    Lengthier than simply “cross the street” is “cross to the other side of the street” which is probably what I’d say if I was relaying a story like that. – Jim Mar 15 at 22:48
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If trying to avoid an old adversary or time wasting acquaintance I may find I

"switch sides of the street" or "change sides of the street"

for an example see #5 & #8 Ways to Prevent and Defend Yourself Against a Street Assault

or more simply (informally)

"cross sides"

(and continue in the same direction) to avoid them.

I tried looking for a suitable definition and cant find "cross sides" but in common parlance it describes the defensive movement a pedestrian should consider making when approaching a bend in an unpaved vehicular area (lane road or street) to avoid oncoming traffic.

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