Thursday, 20 February 2014
I've never written an obituary for a building before, but then again, I've never spent a night watching firefighters attempt to control a blaze in my neighbourhood. The Pasadena Apartments are located at 27 Bold Street, and tonight, flames erupted from windows, doors, and the roof as horrified spectators looked on.
Only a wire fence divides the Pasadena from my apartment's parking lot. It's a spectacular building, full of century-old charm, but for me, it's one of the biggest reasons I'm living in Hamilton. I first fell in love with the Pasadena in 2007 or 2008, shortly after I returned to my parent's semi-detached home in Burlington's suburbs after more than four years of living in Ottawa. I was restless, and in need of a change, so when two close friends began renting an apartment in the Pasadena, I fell in love.
I fell in love with the apartment's charm — a nook for a kitchen, a fireplace, and whirring radiators. I fell in love with its proximity to Augusta Street and the Hamilton GO Station. And so I moved to Hamilton. At the time, a basement apartment was available at the Pasadena, but it had multiple bedrooms, which I didn't need, and the rent was too high. So I settled on the next best thing, an apartment just steps away from the Pasadena. It's from this apartment, where I have lived since April 2008, that I began to smell smoke just after 9:00 p.m.
There are Weakerthan's lyrics that seem fitting tonight: "My city's still breathing, but barely it's true, through buildings gone missing like teeth." You'll be missed, Pasadena.