Third floor(s)

My apartment is on the third floor of a three-story building. My office is on the third floor of a three story building. In order to get to work in the morning, I go down three flights and walk to the ferry terminal, via the coffee shop. On the opposite side of the harbour, I then go up to the third floor, cross the railroad tracks in the “pedway,” then go down to the first floor, into the library and upstairs to the third floor.

My apartment building has no option but the stairs–choice of front or back, depending on whether you want to go out to the street corner or into the parking lot (and access the trash dumpsters). That’s fine. In the Dartmouth ferry terminal, there are choices for ascending from the first to the third floor pedway: escalator, staircase, or elevator. To get back down to the third floor on the other side of the pedway, there is but one option: escalator. When one reverses direction, going from library side of the building to ferry terminal side, one takes a neighbouring escalator up and could take the far side elevator down. But there is no escalator down on the ferry terminal side, just the staircase next to the up escalator.

Inside the library, there are two choices: elevator or staircase. And being me, I take the staircase unless I am in the company of those who only take elevators. So, my days involve a lot of first to third flooring and back again. Going”out” for morning or afternoon coffee, for instance, involves walking down to the first floor, taking the escalator to the pedway, then going down the ferry terminal stairs, back up the up escalator, down the down escalator, and up the stairs from the first to the third floors of the library. I can do all this in 6 minutes if there isn’t a long line at Tim Horton’s.

Yesterday, while eating lunch (on the first floor, in a place accessed by a ramp to the second floor and then an elevator) overlooking the harbour, I watched the Toronto, a Candian Naval vessel arrive back in port after a 6 month cruise to Africa. This is the Canadian Navy: the vessel had a Christmas tree in plain view (I found out later it was on the helicopter pad), and Christmas lights. Details I couldn’t see but which I read in today’s paper include the fact that everyone aboard ship was wearing a Santa Claus hat.

Last night, in my third floor bedroom, as I collected reading material for my pre-sleep binge, I noticed through the window that looks across McLean Street (both my windows look across McLean Street) that the apartment across from mine–also on the third floor–has a beautifully lit Christmas tree taking up nearly the whole view–from their window and from mine.

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