Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Taking the Stairs

In my old job I started each day by climbing to the third floor of a hundred-year-old building on a staircase that looks somewhat like this one. Now I scamper down a single flight of inside stairs, better than most, I'll admit, but definitely the hidden-away staircase of an elevator building. When stairs were the only game in town, they were broad and grand and open. You climbed them with a sense of purpose. Now it often takes me several minutes just to find the stairway, and once I do, well, I'm usually underwhelmed. I climbed one of these in a Maryland medical building Monday: dingy, dark, with an aroma that reminded me of the New York City Subway system in July. I know we can't give up elevators--they're with us to stay--this is just a small tribute to those grande dame staircases, and to the kind of living and walking and thinking they made possible.


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