Wrapped Up In Books

Toronto: I’m sure I’ll miss you soon.

As per a dear friend’s request, I’m following up E’s post on Winnipeg with a post on Toronto. Although I’ve never even visited Winnipeg (and I’m sorry, E, but I never plan on going either), both E and I have lived in Toronto, and indeed, it’s where our story began. E moved out of the city in December, but I left just last Friday, so while her experience has scabbed over, my Torontonian wound is still open and ready for salting.

I was in complete denial about leaving Toronto. I made goodbye efforts nearly everyday of my last two weeks there. Lunch, dinner, and cake dates, and drinks as well. I have never gone out for lunch or dinner as often as those few weeks. Thursday night I went out with my university friends and it felt as if I were playing pretend at leaving. It seemed like only the next night we’d find ourselves at some other pub in Mirvish Village or on someone’s patio draining a few cold ones. However, we’re not, and I’m somewhere else now.

I had wanted to do the things I always dismissed as touristy before I left the city. Go to the Distillery District and take in the brewery tours (I had meant to suggest this as a house event as I was living with three guys who definitely like their beer), finally go up the CN Tower, embrace a Taste of the Danforth without getting pissed off about the f-ing large crowds, or (gasp!) even go clubbing if only to realize exactly what I hate about it in the first place.

Other things I meant to do but didn’t were the things I knew would be the last time I’d have done them. Buy a loaf of marbled rye at Silverstein’s on McCaul (best rye in Toronto),

Silversteins bakery
Silverstein’s bakery

get an order of pad thai at either Red Room or Flip Toss ‘n’ Thai (or both – they’re very different), relax on the patio at Hemingway’s with sangria in hand, get a coffee at Futures,

Futures Bakery

Futures Bakery

sushi at Sushi on Bloor (New Gen is no longer my preference), walk through Kensington Market (daytime only!) to buy nuts and dried fruit from the Mexican lady, a final trip to Centre Island, go on a leisurely bike ride, or even just party hard with my friends (I missed the last rager – I knew I’d get too out of control anyway).

I think part of the reason I feel so unfazed about leaving Toronto is the fact that the Toronto I experienced this past year is so different from the Toronto of my undergrad. Autumn of last year had a strange vibe to it – the kick off was the mass exodus of my closest friends (a few stayed behind, but it still really rocked my world). Being thrust into the workforce opened up a new realm of stress I hadn’t encountered before and exposure to the shittiest landlords anyone could possibly ever have really blew away any conception I had of Toronto as being flawless. Two more friends left by Christmas, but in the New Year a lot came back which really revitalized my sentiment for the city.

I’ve spent my entire adult life here and it’s where the majority of my memories have been born and fostered. A lot of who I am today I owe to the privilege of having lived in this city for so long. Granted, it’s no NYC, but to me it was a big city with a neighbourhoody feel and nothing else will ever compare. I’m not sad about it yet, but I’m the first person to wax nostalgic for anything so I know it’s around the corner, waiting to pounce on me sometime soon. But until that hits me, Toronto will remain my jump off for the next cliched chapter of my life. I pray that I’ll love Aberdeen just the same.

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3 Comments so far
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I can’t believe you’ve never been up the CN Tower, into the Distillery for a tour, or gone clubbing in Toronto. How is it that I’m TOTALLY the antisocial one and I’ve done all of the above?

PS Aberdeen will rock hard. Two words: Foam. Parties.

Comment by whitehotretort

Oh, I’ve been clubbing (ages ago though) and TO the Distillery District (lest we forget who lived there, E). I just didn’t want to revisit this stuff.

Comment by bohemianvegan

Yeah I think I went clubbing once and was so offended I had to pay $20 to check my coat I never wanted to go back. Ever.

Comment by whitehotretort

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