Sunday, September 09, 2012

Road Trip, Day 9

Today was our second, and final, full day in Toronto. We visited the The Distillery Historic District and the Cabbagetown Festival. And yes, that storm trooper was on guard duty at the Cabbagetown Festival.

The day started with a nice chill to the weather. When we woke up this morning the outside temperature was below 60° F. How much lower I can't say, as Canada is all metric and uses °C (Centigrade for those of you in the southern hinterlands) for its temperature readings. Yesterday's rains had meant a front had passed through, with cold air behind it. It was truly enjoyable, as Florida won't see cooler weather until sometime in January.

We took our time getting ready, letting Matthew do what he needed to do on a Sunday before we came barging in. I need to stress that having Matthew and his lovely wife Penny help us around Toronto was vitally important to our enjoyment of Toronto in a very short time. Without their help we would have been floundering around Toronto like another pair of clueless tourists (although at one point I did perform a turning maneuver that would have made me curse a blue streak if a tourist had performed it in Orlando; sorry about that). They truly went out of their way as informal guides, and we are deeply grateful.

We started out by picking up Matthew at his place. Penny was working on jewelry for a show she's participating in next weekend, which kept her busy all day yesterday and a good part of today. She would join us latter in Cabbagetown. Matthew and Penny are truly urbanites, using Toronto's mass transit system or else biking or walking to where they need to go. They're something of a throwback to an earlier period, when that was the norm for urban living. We provided the wheels for quickly moving around, although if I'd had more time I would have used the same mass transit they used.
Matthew, my wife and I arrived at The Distillery around noon. The Distillery occupies and area defined by Parliament, Mill, and Distillery Lane. It's a tourist area, but a self-conscience and rather high-quality tourist area. This is not your typical Disney or Universal tourist type area; it's much better than that. We stayed for roughly three hours, during which I photographed a bit and we had an excellent late lunch. What follows are my photographs of view I saw and enjoyed. I wish it didn't have quite the buildup it has, as the Victorian architecture and brickwork was very interesting in and of itself.
We left The Distillery around 3pm and headed, in a round-about fashion, towards the Cabbagetown Festival. I say round-about as they closed off a number of streets for the festival. We spent a fair amount of time finding a place to park, but when we did it was right in the heart of the event. Penny joined us later at Cabbagetown.

Events like Cabbagetown Festival, unlike The Distillery, are more about the people of Toronto. That's what makes something like the Festival so special. My wife and I enjoyed walking around, looking at the art and just soaking up the vitality and unique atmosphere.
Once we were finished strolling through the Cabbagetown Festival we all piled into the Prius and headed back to Matthew's and Penny's place. There we walked a block or so to where we all had an excellent supper, a place called By The Way Cafe. It was a small intimate dining spot that served us all a superb meal. We took our time eating, had a nice desert, and then sat around and talked a bit. It was the kind sophisticated adult meal you read about in novels, and it was great. When we finished we walked a bit around Bloor just to see what was out before we finally left our hosts and headed back to our hotel.
Tomorrow we pack up the car and head back to Orlando. We'll make a few more stops along the way, more places we want to see like the places we saw on the way up. The trip has become more than a trip, a kind of accidental second honeymoon for the two of us, but most importantly, a travel adventure made very, very special by our two Toronto hosts and now very special friends. We're going to really miss Matthew and Penny.

4 comments:

  1. Seems like you are having unrestrained fun. I like the images but I also like the wanderlust.

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  2. Thank you Kirk. It's been a real adventure for the two of us. I don't think I'd have had as much fun by myself as I've had with my wife. It has been a real recharge for our souls.

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  3. It was a great day. I really needed the reminder to relax and enjoy photography in places like the Distillery, which sometimes doesn't come naturally. It has been quite something to be able to show you the neighbourhood, and then see it through your eyes.

    And being able to sit and chat over dinner is a rare treat, so thank you both for that.

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    1. You're quite welcome. Judy and I are already thinking of going up next year in September when I have three weeks of vacation, spending a week in Pennsylvania and the rest distributed around the north. We may take another side trip up to Canada and Toronto, but we've no where near making that kind of detailed plans just yet. Only the Gettysburg portion is solidly planned.

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