My Week 234: Up On The Roof

As many of you know, I’m from a very small town, but I work in Toronto, so during the week, I live downtown in a condo. I’m on the 34th floor. I have a balcony but I never go out there, not because I’m afraid of heights but because I’m afraid of falling FROM them. But the view from my windows is always very interesting, because I can see into other buildings as well as being able to look down on other roofs, and I’ve seen some crazy stuff. One of the buildings opposite had this naked mannequin in the window for the longest time. Once in a while, it sported a jaunty fedora, but it never wore pants. EVER. I’m just glad I had the posterior view because looking at mannequin junk every day would be very disconcerting.

Look at my bum!

 Last week, I was looking out my bedroom window, which overlooks another building. I’ve seen it hundreds of times, but I’ve never actually paid attention to the thing that I suddenly noticed and am now absolutely befuddled by. Take a look at the picture below. It shows the side of a building with a beautiful mural celebrating singers and venues in Toronto. There’s also a rooftop which features a ladder.

Ladder to nowhere

 Now think about the ladder. What is the deal with that f*cking ladder? It comes out of a brick wall, goes down and then along the roof, then suddenly stops. It’s not high enough to reach the next level of the roof, and it’s above the door in the brick. If you look closely you can tell that it doesn’t go INTO the brick—it’s just attached to it. It’s either performance art making a statement about the futility of life or a very poorly designed roller coaster.

When I first moved to Toronto in 2015, I lived a different building on the 27th floor. I was initially alarmed by how high up I was, and the fact that I had floor to ceiling windows made me a little dizzy. But I soon learned to love the view—I could see the sun rising over the lake in the morning, and the city lights were gorgeous at night. But the best part was that the condo directly overlooked the roof of the building next door, which, when I moved in, featured a lovely roof garden with raised boxes of shrubberies, lighted paths, benches, and whatnot. Then around the beginning of March, I looked out and saw a crew of workers starting to dismantle the whole thing. I was initially dismayed, but not long after they ripped it apart and took it down to bare concrete, they started laying new rubber membrane and then putting down patterned paving stones. I had ongoing hope that one day it would become an even more beautiful rooftop garden. But the PACE of the workers concerned me. There were 4 men–they arrived around 7 am every morning, and they were gone by the time I got home from work. And after a month, they hadn’t even finished LAYING the paving stones. One Thursday night when I got in, it seemed that all of the stones were in place. Except for ONE SPOT, where there was a hole with a single paving stone missing. I assumed they had left it because it was quitting time, and that it would be easy to finish up the next morning, but I was wrong.

On Friday morning, I got up, and the crew was there. They were too far away to really identify but there were 4 guys—let’s call them Bill, Frank, Bob, and Monty. Over the course of the next hour, as I was getting ready for work, I was fascinated by their activity—or lack thereof—as you can tell by this chronicle which I have named “The Tale of the Hole”:

7:02 – Bill, Frank, and Monty are wandering aimlessly around the roof. Bob comes out of a porta-potty. (I have NO idea how they got a porta-potty up there.) I go into the bathroom and wash my face.

7:05 – Bill is staring at the hole. Frank is leaning against the wall, having a smoke. I put in my contact lenses.

7:07 – Bill is standing IN the hole. Frank is staring at him. I wash my hair.

7:10 – Bill and Frank are BOTH standing in the hole. It’s a tight fit AND they’re facing each other. I dry my hair.

7:15 – Frank is standing in the hole. Bill is about 10 feet away, lying on his stomach facing the hole and using his thumb as a gauge. For what exactly, I have no idea. Monty is hovering nearby. No sign of Bob. I pour out some cereal and go back into the bathroom to put on some make-up.

7:20 – Frank is out of the hole, and Bill is once again in it. He’s jumping up and down. Frank observes him carefully. I put my cereal bowl in the sink and apply mascara.

7:22 – Frank and Bill are kneeling on either side of the hole. They are facing each other and look like they are genuflecting. Perhaps a small god lives in the hole. I brush my teeth.

7:24 – Monty is standing in the hole. Frank and Bill observe him carefully. Could it be a time-travel portal? Maybe that explains what happened to Bob, whom I haven’t seen in a little while. No, wait—Bob has just come out of the porta-potty again. So much for the time-travel theory. Unless the porta-potty IS the portal. Hmmm. I go into my room to get dressed.

7:29 – Monty and Bill are standing next to the hole. Bob has made his way over, and seems to be instructing Frank on how to kill an imaginary insect by stomping repeatedly on it with his foot. He stomps, then looks encouragingly at Frank, who then stomps a little himself. They continue this for several minutes. I pack my lunch.

7:33 – Bob and Frank are still “killing insects”. Monty and Bill are now both lying on their stomachs across from each other, facing the hole, and both are using their thumbs as gauges. Again, for what, I have no idea. I get my bags ready to leave.

As I leave, Bill is once again IN the hole. Monty, Frank, and Bob are observing him carefully. I have hope that, based on the efforts of the morning, the hole will be filled by the time I get home from work.

4:30 – I arrive at my condo, anxious to see what progress the crew have made. Not only is the hole still visible, there are now at least 14 other holes where once there were none. It’s going to be a long summer.

So many holes…

And it was a very long time before that roof was finished—if you want to know what happened next, check out My Week 94: Sexy Roof Time.

I’m actually moving home at the end of April to start commuting  to work daily by train. I’m really excited about it, but I WILL miss the views.

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33 thoughts on “My Week 234: Up On The Roof

  1. Lol, that mannequin in the window is just creepy. But an unfinished roof top would stomp on my very last nerve. God you make me laugh so much, and I ave to agree with you, what’s up with men being embarrassed buying condoms? I mean really? They’re the ones using them, it goes on their junk so why the embarrassment? Lol

    Liked by 3 people

    • I think it’s just the collision of worlds–having tampons and condoms in the same aisle. And yes, that mannequin was creepy AF, but we started calling him Manny and I don’t know if that made it better or worse!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Kathleen Howell says:

    Floor to ceiling windows and city lights at night… how incredibly awesome.. I’ve never lived in a high rise but the views would be incredible. I’m on the 12th floor at work and that provides some pretty cool views of our city. Good luck with the move!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m going to spend all day thinking about that ladder. I think you might have nailed it on the poorly designed rollercoaster thing, but I’ll need to spend 8 to 10 hours pondering it.

    All kidding aside, those views are spectacular!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. The views are quite spectacular. And a little bit confounding, when the mannequin is figured into the equation. Here is my tracks theory: the tracks were once used as a tramway for snow removal?? OK, maybe not, but what the heck? I’ll miss your being a link to Toronto for me, but do anticipate some reeeealllllly good train stories. Enjoy your Sunday—mine just got better reading this.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I don’t think it’s a ladder. It looks more like an enormous towel radiator. Actually, it is positioned over a vent in the wall so my guess is it is some kind of ‘get rid of excess heat through radiation’ device. Bloody weird though.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That mural on the side of the building is so interesting–I feel like I should recognize that guy–that I wouldn’t have noticed the ladder to nowhere if you hadn’t mentioned it. And I think the ladder is some kind of modern art sculpture. They placed it on top of the building knowing that people in surrounding buildings would look down and see it. The other possibility is that it was that it was installed by Bill, Frank, Bob, and Monty, and you know how those guys are.
    And that mannequin reminds me of a local billboard for a car dealership from many years ago. The slogan was “We’ll beat the pants off any deal!” and there was a cartoon of a series of people seen only from the waist down with their trousers around their ankles–all wearing boxers, thankfully. And to one side there was a mannequin that was dressed up to look like a guy putting up the billboard with his trousers down–also wearing boxers.
    It stayed up for a long time but I wonder how many wrecks it caused.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Love the pic of the ladder, also the mannequin – both would make great photo prompts! May I borrow them if I get stuck? Anyway, having coffee, wet hair out of the shower, dressed and so happy to see my Weekly pick me up in the form of your blog.🌝

    Like

  8. That’s one of the things I miss about TO. My apartment with a view. It was only later that I found out that the redder the sky, the more polluted the air is. Oh well, you can’t have it all….
    Btw, that ladder looks perfectly normal to me. It shows you can climb nothingness easier that you think.

    Like

  9. LOVE your story! you just got to wonder what in the world the mannequin was doing in that apartment!?
    Your view………incredible. I have always wanted to live downtown in a big city for a year or two………….think of all the stories I missed! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  10. I like the mannequin…we have a half man named Bob in our basement. I think his purpose is to practice punches and kicks, not sure…my husband made the purchase, I go to the gym like a normal person. We’ve been known to dress Bob up for special occasions….we also have a skeleton we take out for Halloween. Bones likes to wear hats and wigs, sometimes she puts a scream mask on….Geezus my husband and I are weird. I feel like I’ve just been through an intervention…must go to a 12 step meeting of some sort now….. I look forward to the future train stories.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. You definitely got more done that morning than those guys did:) I’m also completely mesmerized by the ladder and the tracks that lead up to it–maybe it’s for a train for the holidays? Maybe Santa’s sleigh/train goes around and up and then back down again over and over again?

    Liked by 1 person

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