Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Unravelling the mystery

It was a cool morning, and the huge building loomed up above me menacingly, blocking the early morning sun. Today was the day: the day I'd finally find out what that mysterious monolith on top of the Holland Street Housing Commission Block actually was.

Feeling every molecule of my white-arsed, fully-fed, blithering-busybody, nosey-parker persona, I decided to take along my trusty companion Milly as a buffer and bodyguard.














Just as we were about to cross the road, a swaying-but-smiling old gent approached. Time to be brave. "Er, good morning. Um, you wouldn't happen to know what that (I pointed dramatically behind him, hoping that his one good eye would have the muscle power to focus there) Big M thingy is on top of your building, would you?"

He paused for a few moments, allowing his not-so-good-eye time to drag itself away from my ample chest. "Yessssh, ishts the Polisht shstashtion." He nodded and repeated it again, to cement the idea in his mind as well as mine. "Yesssh, thatsh itsht alright," and swayed with a satisfied smile off in the direction of Cellarbrations.















Despite his help, I rather suspected that I might need further proof. Somehow, the idea of Melbourne's finest providers of law and civic obedience being busy working in an office shaped like a baby blue McDonald's sign twenty floors above the earth didn't seem quite right.

Another gnarled but steady bloke was herding some stray shopping trolleys out of the foyer. Any idea about the mysterious monolith on the roof.... "No no no, I just-a work-a here, then-a go-a home-a."

His attitude wasn't too comforting, yet the foyer and lifts were magnificent and gleamingly clean. No pongs anywhere, except for the soles of my feet (damn that compressed dog turd by the rosemary bush) and Milly (breath).

A youngish woman carrying a shopping bag crammed with about a dozen loaves of white bread joined me. "Hope you don't mind the dog," I said.

"Ah, that's OK. He's a cute little fella."

I didn't have the heart to correct her gender confusion and ploughed on. "You wouldn't happen to know what the blue Big M thing is on top of this building, would you?"

"Nah, but if you find out, tell me. I've been here for eight years and have no idea," she chuckled as she stepped off at floor sixteen, presumably to create one hell of a feast of vegemite toast.















Not surprisingly, there was no access to the roof beyond the 20th floor, so I leaned out of the passage window and took a quick snap of the edge of the pale blue - more like dull grey in close view - thingy. Not a soul was in any of the hallways as I poked around, starting to feel like a voyeur: who was I to wander into their living space, just so I could satisfy my own idle curiosity? Would I like it if someone poked around my front yard just to find out what the dangly feng shui thing on the verandah post was all about?

Still, the view of the Docklands and city was rather good.

Milly nudged me, letting me know by emitting a few other powerfully pungent odours that it was high time we legged it to Debney Park and used one of the nappybags tied to her lead.

Back at home and a few mouse clicks later it seems as though my dodgy-eyed friend was off the mark. The mysterious monolith is indeed the third lift-well, built in 1994 to accommodate the largest of the blocks with a new side wing. Not exactly as thrilling as having the local law enforcement agency working inside it launching themselves from sky rockets hundreds of metres up in the air in response to emergency save-the-world calls, but an answer nevertheless.

18 comments:

delamare said...

Oh Kath, you've got me chuckling loudly away while I am listening to conference call. You could give Sydney Bristow a run for her money.

Do you think the coppers fly down from the top of the building with blue and white checked capes?

River said...

It's a lift-well? That's not at all exciting. It should have been home to a secret S.W.A.T. team or something equally clandestine.

Miles McClagan said...

Yeah, that's what they SAY it is...

I'm not buying it

The Man at the Pub said...

Well done Sherlock (I hope you said "Elementary, dear Milly"). I was sure it was the Presidential suite.

But I'd go see a therapist. I suspect you still have unresolved issues with Big M's.

eleanor bloom said...

This has all given me a giggle too. Who knew you could make lift-well-covers so entertaining?! I think such a talent should be announced on your next book jacket!

So... onto the next mystery then?

Baino said...

God you did it! You're nosier than I am! I'm not convinced either, I reckon it's an air conditioning tower or somthing! Jeez the lift doors are something ey?

Terence McDanger said...

Thanks. It has been rather bugging me since you posted about it.

sonjetta said...

...and what's more, you discovered that the flats are not teeming with axe-murderers. In fact, as far as I know, there are some pretty normal people living in there (but it was definitely a good idea taking a flatulent dog along).

Kath Lockett said...

Delamere,if the cops were flying around in checkered capes, it'd be our tax dollars finally at work.

I know, River, I know. Or some secret art gallery and coffee shop would have been acceptable as well.

Miles, look me up next time you're in Melbourne and I'll not only introduce you to the wonders of Farmers Union Iced Coffee, but also take you up to the 20th floor where you can decide - in your inimitable way - for yourself.

MATP - as with Miles, I urge you - put down your poxy 600ml carton of Big M and try the Farmer's Union Iced Coffee. You will thank me, honestly.

Thanks Eleanor - yes, I have another mystery yet to be solved....so stay tuned.

Baino the lift doors and the reception area are groovier than anything I've seen in the ritzy Pt Melbourne apartment complexes I've visited lately. And yes, my natural nosiness relates directly to the size of my actual nose - huge!

I'm glad to set you at ease, Terence, so that you can now consummate your new relationship with whatsherface.....

Put it this way, Sonjetta: if there were any axe murderers they were either inside their homes busy sharpening their blades or out shopping for new ones, because you could have fired a cannon up the passages and only hit Milly and me.

squib said...

Isn't a bit fancy for a lift-well?

I think it's a freemason's temple

TOM said...

Inspector Kathlock and her trusty canine companion always solve the mystery!!

Kath Lockett said...

Squib, you could be right. Maybe I wasn't wearing the right outfit and didn't know the secret password.

That's right Tom - we did and then did a crap in the park straight afterwards (well, Milly did). I bet Dr Watson didn't have those kind of needs!

Daisy said...

Ohh wow ! great shots and I can almost feel being there.... Thanks for sharing these....

Passin by from BE...

The Blakkat said...

I would have sworn it was the Masons. I mean look at the design on the lift doors for fark's sake. In fact, I still say it's the Masons. Lift well, nah, a cover-up of masonic proportions, for sure.

Shea said...

that was quite an adventure

ashleigh said...

Ha ha! So you did it. After all the warnings about never getting out of there alive. Perhaps it's a cunning plot to keep people from wanting to go there.

And as for "Do you think the coppers fly down from the top of the building with blue and white checked capes".... no... in their blue and white CAPERS... ok. lousy joke. sorry.

Actually, I think it conceals a secret listening station where the spooks intercept satellite messages, read your emails, bug your phones, and read your faxes. So there.

alex said...

Bahahaha - a cop station?! That's
hilarious.

But seriously - all that just for a third elavator?? What do you mean that it was built for a 3rd elavator??

dab said...

LOL, your blog cracked me up.
Especially when combined with the image of Milly wearing specs...

I agree with THe Blakkat it is the Masons. They have been selling their Masonic Lodges everywhere in Melb....