O Canada: part two – Toronto

The first stop on our trip back to Canada was Toronto, where we enjoyed a few nights with my sister and some friends.

The flight in from NYC was bumped by about an hour, but we saw Gina Torres on the plane, which personally, I think made up for the delay. She was just doing normal mom stuff, so we didn’t hound her for photos or anything, although I did go super stalkery in my head, watching and analyzing her every move. “Did she just notice me?” “Look, she plays Scrabble on her iPad too!” “OMG she accidentally glanced at me, I think we’re friends now!”

Our time in Toronto was short but lovely. The kids got to play with their cousins and we enjoyed the country chic hospitality at my sister’s house, hoedowns included.

On Sunday, we all ventured out High Park to do some fishing, see the zoo and play at the so-called “castle park.” My brother-in-law caught one measly little fish and B and I came up empty using the Barbie and Tinkerbell fishing rods, respectively. Well, we both caught some pond weeds, inexplicably named “water dogs” by the youngest cousin, but I don’t think they count since they were not, in fact, real fish or dogs for that matter.

The zoo, as it turns out, was a small selection of animals on display along a side street in the park. It was a little depressing, but they seemed to be well cared for. It’s always a little weird to gawk at animals. I’m always reminded of this poem (sorry, that was the best link I could find).

The castle park is a crazy kids’ play structure built to look like – you guessed it – a castle. Apparently part of it burned down a while ago and was rebuilt (or overbuilt) by local celebrity builder Mike Holmes. It was pretty cool. Before going in, my sister said “the kids just kind of disappear into it and you don’t see them again for 20 minutes.” She was right. At least three times, I was about 80% sure they had been abducted or wandered off, but no, they were just running around like madmen in the mazes and circuits. I guess that’s the point, anyway. Well done, Mike.

Other highlights of our visit included a great home-cooked meal with our friends, and I had a nice girls’ night out with my bff at a hilariously hipster bar in the neighbourhood. I had some kind of drink called an “elderberry mist” (I think). I admit, it was tasty, although I expected it to come with a moustache or ironic coaster, alas, it did not.

Our visit was over too soon, and we headed off on the train to Ottawa for our next adventure.


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