A ladder was descending from above . . . or it would probably be truer to say it was ascending from below . . . but anyway what difference does it make, ascending or descending, it's all the same. Or maybe there's a world of difference . . . but anyway, a ladder, you could go up it or you could go down it, you could even have one person going up it and at the same time someone else coming down it, the fellow below going up to the top of the ladder, the one above coming down to the bottom, or beyond rather the bottom, off somewhere else. But what would they do when they met each other? It would want to be a very wide ladder for them to pass each other, amicably one would hope, and everyone knows intimacy breeds amicability, and what could be more intimate than passing someone on a ladder.
"Intimacy breeds amicability" - I should try and remember that, it's the kind of thing that could get you noticed, you'd just have to choose the right moment . . .
But anyway the two people - men say, it would be more likely to be men - passing each other on the ladder . . . but in all probability, as I was saying, or beginning to say, they wouldn't be passing each other as how many ladders are wide enough to be condusive to passing? Instead you'd have an impasse, the two of them stuck, looking at each other, and after a while of this looking probably some kind of exchange:
"Could you get out of my way?"
"How can I?"
"You could move aside."
"You can see yourself I can't. There's no room."
The man from above coming down could agree to start to retreat upwards but it wouldn't take long to see the problem there: the man below could still never get past, the man above always remaining above. So intead it's the lower man who'd have to retreat, retreat in an absolute sense, that is down to the ground and off to the side, out ofthe way, and then the other fellow could descend fully also, all the way down, and now with him gone if he still felt like ascending, the formerly lower man that is, could now unimpeded go up all the way to the top, at least unimpeded that is as long as there isn't someone else now also coming down, blocking his way, a someone who was all along behind, or rather above, or beyond the earler high up fellow who in the meantime came down. In which case of course the lower man going up would have to retreat again if he really wanted to persist in trying to get all the way up to the top.
It would be a bit much if after that came another unexpected descending man, but anyway, that's something about a ladder and maybe going up or down it and what might happen if there's a conflict of practical interests in the going up or the down.