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Walking to Work

At last, after a week here in Alternate Accordion City (a.k.a. Ottawa), a sunny day! With all the grey and gloomy days, I was beginning to think that Ottawa was turning into Vancouver. Here are some pictures that I snapped this morning on my wonderfully short walk to work at the Shopify offices…

First, Centre Block, which most people just think of as “The Parliament Building”. It’s the equivalent of the Capitol in Washington, D.C., except that you can walk right up to it without being taken out by sharpshooters. You can even do handstands on the lawn if you feel like it:

Centre block, a.k.a.

The groundskeepers seemed to really be enjoying themselves this morning. Outdoor work is so much nicer on days like today. That’s a statue of Canada’s first and hardest-drinking prime minister, Sir John A. MacDonald on the left, and Chateau Laurier in the background on the right.

Groundskeepers raking up stray grass on Parliament Hill, with Chateau Laurier in the background

Here’s the Rideau Canal, as seen from the Rideau Street bridge, looking north:

The Rideau Canal, as seen looking north from the Rideau Street bridge

Here’s a zoomed-in shot looking north along the canal, giving a better view of the Ottawa River:

The Rideau Canal, close up

Here’s Chateau Laurier’s west side:

Chateau Laurier, west side

And here’s Chateau Laurier’s east side, along with the surrounding buildings, as seen from the sidewalk on Sussex Drive, the Canadian equivalent of Pennsylvania Avenue in Washington, DC (yes, the prime minister’s house is just a short bike ride away from me):

The tops of Chateau Laurier and buildings on its east side

Crossing Sussex takes you into ByWard Market, where Shopify is located. Along the way is Chateau Lafayette, a.k.a. “The Laff”, a delightfully divery watering hole that I remember (or more accurately, don’t remember) from my days at Crazy Go Nuts University:

Sign of the Chateau Lafayette House tavern

Now that the weather’s warming up, the stalls in the market are really getting into full swing:

ByWard Market stall selling flowers and vegetables

ByWard Market stall selling flowers and herbs

Steps away from Shopify’s front door on York Street are a bunch of clothing stalls, including this one:

ByWard Market stall selling clothes and jewellery

And here’s the last pic: Shopify’s front door. It won’t be for too much longer; later this summer, Shopify is moving to a larger space across the street.

11 shopify

From my front door to Shopify’s, it’s about a ten-minute walk at a leisurely pace. With the notable exception of the trip from my bed to the home office, it’s one of the nicest commutes I’ve ever had, and I’m looking forward to doing many more this summer.

This article also appears in The Adventures of Accordion Guy in the 21st Century.

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