Monday, August 21, 2006

Bon Voyage

That's got to be just about it for the mad gaddingabouting that we have been caught up in of late.

This past weekend we were off to Toronto to visit D2 and friend. When I say Toronto, I really mean it — not the burbs but downtown. I used to drive there without care, but that was a long time ago. Since then, I have been living in small places, and Toronto had begun to seem foreign and a little bit overwhelmingg to me. Since we were heading downtown (not the CBD but pretty darn close to it), we decided that it would be prudent to drive in on Friday evening. We reasoned that the traffic should be somewhat more tolerable by then. And I guess it was. We found the girls' apartment without too much angst or traffic congestion.

That night, they took us for a walk along Bloor St, a major east-west street, lined with shops and eateries for block after block after ... well, I'm not sure if the commerce ever stops, both geographically and temporally. We walked the street very late at night, and it seemed that everyone was out —— everyone and their dogs — literally. Toronto has become a very dog-friendly place. They and their people walked in and out of shops at will. I've never seen that anywhere else.

We did a lot of walking the next day too, many kilometres as a matter of fact. The girls bought footwear and other necessities for their upcoming sojourn to Thailand and other countries of Southeast Asia. We walked along King St, up Yonge St, and over to The [Gay] Village on Church St. We snacked at a restaurant there, and for the first time in my life, I noticed guys checking me out. I guess women get used to it, but it was a new experience for me. Now I'm not saying that they looked at length ... or twice ... or longingly, but I guess it's just a guy thing — to do that quick visual scan. In fact, sometimes I catch myself caught up in a long admiring stare. I try not to do that, particularly in my aged and enfeebled state, but there you have it —— boys will be boys —— whether hetero or homo or young or old, I guess.

But it was fun: seeing the sights and being reintroduced to life in the big city after the passage of so many years. And it was good to see D2 and Puff. As I said, they're leaving for distant lands in just a few short weeks. They'll be gone until almost Christmas, so today's parting was not easy or dry-eyed for Mom and Dad. They'll always be our little ones. They won't really understand what that's all about until they have their own little ones. None of us do.

Bon Voyage Ladies. Be safe.


Anonymous said...

I lived in TO about 20years ago.. your words took me back there. I loved the city, especially the downtown area. Walking down Yonge St.. I remember it well.

Sarah Elaine said...

I rather like Toronto, though I'm not sure I could drive in it.

Sounds like the trip was special -- as it should have been.

Madcap said...

I've got a BIL in Toronto, on Bloor St. as a matter of fact, and he and his wife and given up using a car altogether. Everything is so close! If they need one for some reason, they'll just rent it for the day.

I'm wishing the ladies a good trip too. Safe and happy are the watchwords of the day!

-epm said...

Ah, Toronto. Probably my favorite city... not that I travel all that much. It just feels so international, so multi-cultural... cosmopolitan.

And you gotta love the irony of The Village being on Church Street. :)

Turtle Guy said...

Bloor Street rang a bell! Back in '99 I did "Toronto" including the berbs... and stayed at a friend's place on Palmerston Avenue - a one-way south of Bloor. Found a place on Bloor - a little Italian restaurant - drank an extremely expensive bottle of red wine and had some amazing food. Thanks for the reminder, and I'm thrilled you had a wonderful visit!

...and the Kensington Market was within walking distance... that was an experience too!