5 Flights Up

View From Dan and Britt’s New Apartment

Earlier this week, I had republished a photo of one of the stainless-steel eagles that adorn the Chrysler Building. Coincidently, Dan texted us the above photo that shows the view from his and Britt’s new East Williamsburg apartment. It sits atop a five-floor walkup, the penthouse sort-of-speak, in a building without any taller neighbors nearby. In the picture you can see the Chrysler Building sticking up in the distance. In 1930, at over a thousand feet, it was the tallest building in the world, but by 1931 that title transferred to the Empire State Building. The much taller building in the photograph is One Vanderbilt (1400’), which only opened last fall. I bet its owners are scrambling to fill the place. Dan and Britt are going to take the month of April to move into their new place and hire movers to haul the heavy stuff up those five flights of stairs.

In their new accommodations I am reminded of a movie that I once watched called 5 Flights Up, now on Netflix. Starring Diane Keaton and Morgan Freeman as an elderly Brooklyn couple, who are some 40 years into a loving and happy marriage. The movie’s premise it that they have decided that they are getting too old to climb those stairs. This decision plunges this couple into the dog-eat-dog world of NYC real estate, with its cast of annoying characters. In the end they decide they’re not too old yet and do not sell their apartment after all, which pisses everyone else off, but at least they’re happy.

Great Horned Owlets

Great Horned Owlet

We had just finished our walk in Forest Park. Anne had found fifteen different bird species, but nothing very noteworthy, just all of the usual suspects. We were in the car and had just started driving home when Anne spied this owlet. I quickly pulled over and parked. There were a couple of other women already watching them. There were actually two owlets that had just fledged within the last week. Both women knew Mark of Forest Park Owls fame. Mark has been following these Great Horned owls for years and years. Charles, the patriarch has been the thread running through this story. Sarah, his first mate died, but the old guy got a new mate, Sophie, and is obviously still in the game. Mark names these birds. I had kind of lost track of this owl family, when they moved their nest. Racoons had evicted them from their old home. They have found a new one only a few trees away. The owlets have flown from the nest tree to two different neighboring trees. Now that we know that they are there we’ll be sure to look for them again soon, like maybe tomorrow.