Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Third strike by garbage shute arsonist on MacLaren

On my way back home from the Byward Market this evening, I went by the Canal and took some nice night shots of the beatiful moon, City Hall, and Lisgar Collegiate.

Further on my way home, I saw some lights and sirens on MacLaren and decided to check it out.

Interestingly, it was just West of Somerset--the same location as the first entry in this blog!

Here's the scene from Bank:

Here's a shot of the building, 415 MacLaren, with the backside of the Hartman's store on the right. Don't let the perspective fool you; the tower is much longer along MacLaren than it is deep:

As I arrived, some firefighters were carrying large fans in the front door. There were three or four trucks, and one truck was leaving as I showed up. A hose was connected to this fire hydrant, but the hose was not used, and it was put away shortly after I took the photo. The scene was not intimidating to passers-by: while the firetrucks had one pair of wheels on the sidewalk, the area wasn't cordoned off with yellow tape as with other fires I've wintessed. In fact, I had to step over a sack of fire hydrant tools when I stepped off the grass after taking this photo:

I counted about 60 people outside the entrance and across the street, with others coming and going. Most were calm and chatting amongst themselves, though a couple were noticeably uncomfortable, cold, and eager to get back into their home.

I chatted with one group of folks across the street. They said that someone set fire to garbage and sent it down the garbage shute, which--as anyone who's lived in an apartment or condo tower knows--causes smoke to permeate the building. Apparently, this was actually the third time in the past week that this has happened, which would explain why everybody seemed more impatient than nervous.

One of the ladies asked me about my camera as I took a couple of photos. She said that she has a digital camera, too, but no computer. She recently bought one of those all-in-one photocopier/printers, which can scan and print photos straight from a memory card. The people at Staples on Merivale were not helpful in her purchase (they insisted she'd need a computer, so she got it at the Staples on Bank in Centretown instead!).

Let's hope the folks who live in that tower can get a decent night of sleep, and that the person who set the fires gets a clue and gives it up.

As for those photos I mentioned above, I'll post about at some later date, but it was helpful that I had taken them, as it gave me a chance to figure out the right settings to get decent night shots on my consumer-grade camera. I didn't want to spend much time taking photos while in among the crowd.


  1. Ah! That's what happened. I walked by there last night, and I couldn't figure out why there were so many fire trucks.

    You should post about your camera. The (small sized) night shots look pretty good.

  2. Hi, I found you through Woodsy's blog -- a very nice series. I'd like to know about your camera, too.