20 May 2008


I woke up to Alex the gorgeous cat poking his head around the curtain to check whether I was awake. I noticed during my stay that he is one of the most polite cats in the world in this way – if he doesn’t see you open your eyes he doesn’t jump up on the bed. If he sees you’re awake, though, he will come and stand on your chest and purr mightily at you, or jump up on the bed, walk all over you, then curl up and snooze beside you. Js was already awake, just, so we got up, did some internetting, had showers and planned our day – rather, J told me all the awesome things we could do and I was gleeful about doing them aaaallllll!

We started off by visiting Northbound Leather, where I was to become something of a regular over the next week – not buying anything (too expensive, mostly), but perusing with various friends. J showed me ‘the Matrix coat’, which looked amazing on her. I encourage everyone to send her money so she can buy it!

From there, we walked out the front of the shop and wandered for a while along Yonge St, visiting a great queer bookstore where I drooled over the trans section, and was very interested to hear the conversation the guy behind the counter was trying to start up about a news story in the local queer paper – a trans person who was told to pick a changeroom at the baths and stick to it. I want to talk more about this encounter in my trans blog, so I won’t say too much here, but it was a really interesting situation where on the surface I agreed with the sales assistant, who was saying that all the changerooms should have cubicles and be unisex . . . but there were other interesting things going on, too.

We went into the gorgeously retro Toronto Public Library and checked out the ‘Hanga to Manga’ exhibition, which was interesting, though a kind of strange size and compilation. It was bigger than I’d usually expect a public exhibition in a library to be, but I kind of felt as though it lacked some cohesion, and that the contemporary manga bit had just been tacked on to pull a crowd. The work, however, was gorgeous, and I had a great time learning about various bits of Japanese culture and literature. After this, we were clearly in need of sustenance, so we grabbed some deliciously creamy icecream from Greg’s Icecream (unfortunately, the chocolate fudge sauce wasn’t ready, and J was rather disappointed) and headed along Bloor St to . . . HONEST ED’S, a cheapo discount store of massive proportions, where I encountered the scariest cuckoo clock I’ve ever seen – the crazy moose head on top will give me nightmares, I know it!

One of our main destinations for the day, however, was High Park, which we got to fairly quickly on PT after J showed me some of the underground path system in Toronto. It seems that everyone does indeed live in sub-terrainian caverns, just like they say in the song. High Park was lovely. We took pictures of the cherry and apple blossoms that were out, we saw squirrels, J told me about some of the plants, we walked past the community gardens, discovered some of the most awesome play equipment ever (they asked kids to write or draw what their ideal playground would be like, then they designed it based on the responses. Awesome!), and I spotted my first red winged blackbird. We walked in the park for . . . well, it felt like an hour and a half, two hours . . . I’m not sure. We then caught a bus the wrong way and got kind of stuck between the lake (beautiful) and the freeway (not so beautiful) and ended up flagging down a taxi to take us to Queen West, where we jumped on a streetcar and made our way to the office and paper warehouse where J and A both work.

OMG, THE PAPER. It was gorgeous. I will say no more, but will post pics eventually, so you can drool, too. They gave me a cute little tea tin to take home with me!

By this stage we were quite hungry, and had we made it more quickly to the Rhino we would have been eating a 4 o’clock mystery meal. As it was, we ended up eating an early dinner at about 5. And what a dinner. We ordered a veg curry and the Portobello mushroom salad. The curry was OK, a bit bland, but the mushroom salad was HOLY SMOKES AWESOME. Roast/grilled Portobello mushrooms with raddicio and other salad leaves, a nicely acidic vinaigrette (probably the weakest link, as it tasted a little too much like dressing from a bottle, and I suspect it was), and topped with delicious goats cheese. Om nom nom. I also decided to try some Canadian beer, since I was in the country, and I got a Hockley Valley Stout. It was quite delicious (for beer!), light (for a stout) with a rich caramel malt flavour.

After that, we headed back to J’s apartment and got ready for watching Supernatural - the second last episode of Season 3 – with a bunch of other people. It was fun, people were awesome, cake was consumed with delight! It was a fabbo day!

1 comment:

  1. Oh! I'm so glad you got to go to Honest Ed's! A totally necessary Toronto experience!