• It’s the little things

    by  • 3/2/2009 • Halifax • 0 Comments

    The dog and I are just back from our walk, and we met the most interesting example of a born and raised Maritimer when we were on our way out. Okay, so he spoke clear English and wasn’t drunk, and he likely gets his fish from the store, but he has one of the earmarks of a ne’er left home Nova Scotia locals. This is something I’ve never seen anywhere else before coming here, and it’s one of the things that freaks me out the most…

    He didn’t know how to make the elevator work.

    He entered the magic liftin’ box on our way down, and stared in confusion at the panel with its thirty or so buttons, with only the one “G” lit up brightly. He had his pressing finger out, so he knew he had to do something, but he wasn’t exactly sure what. “I need to go to the ground floor” he confided, and I assured him that we were on our way there now. I’m not sure how he managed to find himself a dozen floors up; maybe it was all some horrible mistake when he took a very wrong turn.

    He mentioned the crappy weather out there, and said he was just down from (what sounded like) Woofa (I looked it up, and I’m guessing he meant Wolfville which has a population of about 3800 according to Wikipedia). When we arrived at the ground level, and the big indicator above the door said “G” on it, the dog and I proceeded, but the man held back, unsure if this was a safe level to exit on.

    “I need to get to the ground floor,” he mentioned to another person in the elevator, and they assured him he could leave.

    It’s an elevator; is the user interface really that challenging? There are buttons with floor numbers, a “G”, a “B”, and an “SB”. It’s not like there’s a Mezzanine level here that might be confused with Main by its “M” button. Heck the buttons even go from the highest numbers at the top down to the SB at the bottom and with a couple obvious emergency type buttons.

    Even kids I have met who came right off the farm in Saskatchewan could decipher an elevator without coaching…

    Is this the last place in the world where exist people who have never seen elevators in real life? Surely they’ve had a friend who described their trip to the big city where they visited the observation deck of some (Maritime style) super high rise with its 10 floors and a view that stretch for blocks.


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