Make that natural desire lines. This seems like something right up good friend Gigi’s blogging alley (Gigi Goes Gaga has a new look, by the way; bright hues of autumn colors, a better fit for the author’s bold, beautifully written reminiscences). But as it turns out, the term comes from urban planning.
I chanced upon it a few days ago in Word Spy, Paul McFedries’ one-of-a-kind website. A desire line, he writes, is
An informal path that pedestrians prefer to take to get from one location to another rather than using a sidewalk or other official route.
A Philippine example might be a counter-flow route at a busy intersection, worn thin by thousands of ordinance-defying, corner-cutting vehicles.
McFedries adds, in a rare Note: "I love that these paths are never perfectly straight. Instead, like a river, they meander this way and that, as if to prove that desire itself isn’t linear and (literally, in this case) straightforward."
You could look it up!