It’s sort of an unfair, if entirely unplanned advantage, really. Not only is the NDP candidate almost certain to win this riding – honestly, I’m not giving away any deep secrets here; I’ve not found anyone of any partisan (or otherwise) persuasion who doesn’t think Paul Dewar will be headed back to the Hill after the ballots are counted in Ottawa Centre tonight – but the election just happens, through sheer luck, to have fallen during the capital’s prettiest season, when the streets and sidewalks are awash in autumn leaves – from deepest scarlet to palest yellow to rusty, earthy brown — and, of course, orange — nearly the same orange as the NDP signs that are nearly completely covering the windows of Team NDP’s store-front campaign headquarters. Even the *building* is colour coordinated – a rich red brick.
The front door is open – so as to encourage drop-ins from supporters, or supporters-in-waiting, presumably, as well as take advantage of the unseasonably warm afternoon breeze – and inside, I can see – well, not a frenzy, exactly, but definitely a hiveish buzz of activity. People are wandering in and out, gabbling on cell phones, leafing through papers, examining post-it notes – but it seems less chaotic than I expected. Maybe this is the lull before the final push — the afterdinner hour, when parties compete to round up all those lollygaggers who just haven’t gotten around to voting yet.
I’ll add pictures when I can – next stop, Somerset Street, where Penny Collenette’s Liberals have set up shop.
Looking for more?
Get the best of Maclean's sent straight to your inbox. Sign up for news, commentary and analysis.