Monday, December 1, 2008


Ryan and I spent Thanksgiving weekend in Toronto. We loved it! I have never been to a city that was so clean or so quiet! The city is beautiful. Driving in it wasn't a problem. The subway system was easy to navigate and very clean. We had a great hotel, with an amazing view. And we were within walking distance of downtown and all the places we wanted to visit. But most importantly, we were right by a Tim Hortons! For my American readers, Tim Hortons is like a Dunkin' Doughnuts, only better. It is a Canada icon. I must have had at least a dozen maple dipped doughnuts (they are my favourite) over a 3 day span! Good thing we did a LOT of walking! (Side note: When did the small hot chocolate at Tim Hortons get so small? Seriously!)

The view from our hotel room!

The Hockey Hall of Fame was number one on our list (Ok, it was number one on my list, not Ryan's!). We spent a couple hours learning about the history of hockey and all the hockey greats. It was amazing to see memorabilia of events my dad talked about. Legends came to life before my eyes. It was a bit unnerving to see displays of events I remember in the Hall. Am I really that old, that things that happened when I was younger are now in a museum? Granted some of them were not that long ago (the winning hockey teams from the 2002 Winter Olympics). But others happened back when I was a teenager: I can remember when Wayne Gretzky scored the goal to set the record for most goals and that was a long time ago! And of course, we stopped to worship, oops! I mean view the Stanley Cup. There, on a stand, without any barriers, was the holy grail of Hockey. The Stanley Cup! We got to touch it, hug it, lick it (just kidding...kind of).

"My precious!"

We also visited the CN Tower. After paying an insane amount of money, we were able to go to the observation deck and get an amazing view of the city. Part of the floor is covered in glass, so you can see all the way to the ground. If you want to experience what it would be like to walk in the middle of air 112 stories up, this is the place for you. It took me a number of tries before I actually ventured out onto the floor. And even after I was on, if I looked down, I stumbled! Ryan said that walking on the glass floor was the most terrifying thing he has ever encountered (remember this guy has been to war...twice!).

Look down...waaaaaaaaaaaaay down!

Tree branches with the CN Tower in the background (I love this picture!)

In preparation for this trip, I did a lot of research. One thing that looked interesting was Habourfront Centre. It was supposed to have art exhibits, crafters, and quaint shops. Apparently, this is true only in the summer. When we got there nothing was open. So much for research! However, there was a skating pond and we decided to make the best of our trip down there. We rented skates and spent an hour skating alongside Lake Ontario, with a great view of the CN Tower.

We spent time at Kensington Market, wandering in and out of shops full of vintage clothes. We tried to go into a couple of the cheese shops there, but barely got in the door because the smell was so bad! We did find a great pastry shop and consumed way too many calories! Kensington Market is in Chinatown, and I tried to find a traditional Chinese dress. However, since the Chinese are small and I am not (I blame the doughnuts!), I did not succeed!

Our last night was spent at the Royal Ontario Museum, wandering through their natural history exhibits. Later that night, after eating dinner and returning to our hotel I got up close and personal with our toilet, spending some quality time sharing my dinner with it. (I no longer recommend the garlic potatoes at Jack Asters!) But the throwing up wasn't the worst part! The worst part was knowing that Ryan was eating the apple pie I had brought back from the restaurant to eat later on! But, being the ever thoughtful husband he is, he ate it out of my sight.

As with almost all vacations, this one ended way too quickly and we found ourselves on our way back home. As we drove out of Toronto, we had an amazing view of the skyline with the CN Tower right up front. Visiting Toronto made me realize how much I miss city life. The pulse of the city is contagious. There is so much to see and do. All you have to do in a city is walk out your front door and BAM! There it is: the city! It is so glamorous! If things go according to our plan, we should be in a city setting within 60 days. I can't wait! Only, I hope our new city doesn't have glass floors 112 stories above the ground. That is one feature I can do without!


BBKing77 said...

Psst... The winter Olympics were in 2002! And you call yourself Canadian!

A soldier scared of walking on glass? I walked on the glass in the Calgary tower last month with no problem. Does that make me braver than a soldier?

Michelle said...

Oops! You are right! It was 2002. I will change it. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

I'm glad you loved the city Michelle, it really is one of my favorites, but I am a little bit biased!

Joe said...

How fun! Your trip brings up lots of memories from my childhood. I need to get back there for a visit sometime.

I remember the glass floor on The CN tower. It really is quite terrifying to walk on it. There's something about being one pane of glass away from certain death.

By the way, there are like 4 Tim Hortons' in the Syracuse area now. One is just a couple of miles from my house. There's also a great pastry place within walking distance, but no cheese shops.

Ashley said...

Were you staying on Yonge street by any chance? That's where Chris and I lived. I'm glad you loved it! I sure didn't. Way to many people, Traffic is horrible, and the smog... don't even get me started!