Saturday, October 1, 2016

City Daily Photo Theme Day: Abandoned

The first day of each month is always a theme day for members of City Daily Photo, and for the first of October, that theme is Abandoned. It's a theme chosen by Peter Hyndman at Sunshine Coast Daily Photo. You can see how others are interpreting the theme here.

It is a truth universally acknowledged that Canadians shall, from time to time, lose an item of winter apparel. ~ Jane Austen, Pride & Prejudice & Polar Vortexes

I have two different takes on this theme,  starting with these items from last winter, each having had fallen from the possession of an unlucky owner. I too have occasionally lost an item of winter clothing- something of a nuisance when you've misplaced your gloves and it's minus 30 degrees Celsius out there.

My other take on this theme is more recent, and it's a building you might remember (with a wee bit of a rant). Somerset House is set at the intersection of Somerset and Bank Streets downtown. Back in 2007 the building was being renovated when there was an accident, resulting in a partial collapse at the back, the closure of the building, and the closure of the intersection. While the city bears some of the responsibility for things early on, most of the blame since then goes to the owner for what has essentially become an abandoned building. There is next to no sign that anything ever gets done here. The scaffolding remains always in place, the building seems forever left to its fate. On those occasions when one of the local papers writes an article about it, the building owner is either silent, or gives the usual half-hearted reassurances or pitiful lame excuses. All while coming across as dreadfully incompetent.

I can say I'm fed up, as are many others. It's been years, and this guy is just one excuse after another. Someone who gave a damn about the building and the area would have gotten the project done. If he's not willing to finish the work, he might as well sell to someone who can still save the building.

But of course he won't, and so the building continues to decay through sheer neglect. As far as I'm concerned at this point, the owner of this building should be driven out of business and sued for every cent he's got, and every single resident of this city should have the right to punch him in the face.


  1. The lost gloves is an easier subject than the maddening abandoned building. Good luck with both. Hang on to your hat!

  2. There is a lot to find in the streets.

  3. we get work boots or gloves stuck on fence posts here - abandoned.

  4. This is why I try to stick to gloves with a hook that will attach them to my coat!

  5. I don't know, William, but I think you ought to get a grip! Heh, heh. Good takes on the theme. I really love that first shot!

  6. I always wonder how such incompetents get their hands on property and then carry on and hang onto it by as you say excuses and more.

  7. I love the lion with the hat! :)

  8. Love to know more as to why the building improvements stalled. Finances? Government regulations? Poor business plan? Love that sporty lavender cap on the lion!

  9. Great choice for the theme. Hope you are well.


  10. Some things are lost while that poor building was abandoned!!

  11. So that is where my glove is. :) I can't believe the city allows the scaffolding to remain in place. If the building is not be worked on, then take it down. If it collapses, I can imagine a lot of people would be suing especially if someone got hurt. Kind of stupid if the owner can get away with it.

  12. @Dina: in an Ottawa winter, a hat is an absolute must.

    @Marianne: there is, yes.

    @Marleen: so do I. It's one of two that flank the entrance of an appliance parts shop.

    @Tex: gloves are very common. Occasionally one sees shoes left behind.

    @Norma: that would come in handy.

    @Lowell: thanks!

    @Red: I can say that his endless excuses disgust me.

    @Linda: it was perfect for the theme, that hat and lion.

    @SRQ: I think the city gave the guy way too much leeway. He's used up all the patience they had by this point. I imagine most if not all of the council feels the way I do.

    @Janis: getting there.

    @MB: and it was once a lovely building, too. A shame it's come to this point.

    @Bill: the city's been too lenient. This should have never gone on this long. Someday when that bastard bites the dust, I'll show up at the funeral home and spit on his coffin. Most times they say don't speak ill of the dead, but this guy is one of those exceptions.

  13. That is too long to be fight with the insurance company so the owner must be at fault! I'm surprised the city hasn't stepped in.

  14. Like the behatted lion. Your empty building saga sounds so similar to a few around these parts. Councils are far to slow to act on these and it just drags on and on until the building falls down or is demolished.

  15. It could be turned into a nice apartment house or hotel with those lovely gable windows.

  16. Stark reminders of what happens when care is not taken.

  17. Somerset house seems to be begging for a little love and understanding. It is in such a prominent position in the city and needs attention just to tune the cityscape. It's a wonder that relevant authorities - such as an historical society - can't step in. Surely there is some time frame limit on leaving such a precious building this shabby way. Good luck on this one.

  18. Yes, gloves and hats are often lost. Too bad about that building. Often someone runs out of funds because they didn't know what they were getting into.

  19. All the items that are lost and forgotten. A little poignant. The building? Much less so.

  20. You found a brilliantly local way to meet the meme, and I adore your passion for your city!

  21. It is funny your first choice: abandoned-lost gloves :)
    But it is a pity the story of the building.

  22. @RedPat: at this point the city has lost all patience.

    @William: the city was much too lenient with this guy for too long.

    @Catalyst: or a library.

    @Mari: true.

    @Gemma: there is a heritage group here that has been quite vocal about this building. There is also an architecture firm here that specializes in heritage restoration. They are the first group I would think of to come in and take it over.

    @Linda: I find myself wondering if the owner over extended himself.

    @Kay: I agree.

    @Cloudia: thanks.

    @MDP: they do contrast.

  23. I've never lost a glove before William, but I have misplaced many a scarf 😊 I'm totally with you on the abandoned building, way to many of them are left to wrack and ruin!

  24. great series on abandoned william...sad about the building though :(

  25. Your first choice is my prefered, William.
    I also love the lion with the hat :)

  26. I know we've lost a few gloves in our time, I have been hanging on to my winter pair for a while now and hopefully it will stay that way at least through this winter. These photos are great, a nice take on the abandoned theme. Sad to see a nice building like that deteriorate so badly.

  27. Hats and gloves are items that I often see abandoned here too. I always wonder how the person feels when they realize "Oh, I only have one glove!"...

  28. We don't really have winter where I live, but if we did, I'm sure I'd be losing those items. It's so sad to see beautiful and historic old buildings deteriorate like that.

  29. @Grace: the guy deserves a lot of smacks.

    @Tanya: thank you.

    @Karl: the lion was irresistible. It's one of two lions that stand outside an appliance business in the Glebe.

    @Denise: I have several pairs of gloves, just in case I lose a pair. Same goes with toques and scarves.

    @Halcyon: it's usually realized too late to recover the glove!

    @Pat: it is a sad sight.

    @Jennifer: it really is.