I’ve only been to Toronto twice (not by choice!), but the city made a huge impression on me. I want to go back basically as much as possible. I’ll warn you, some of the reasons I love it are silly -- but then, I’m a silly girl!
1. It’s Clean
I know the big stereotype is how squeaky clean Toronto is -- but it’s true! It’s absolutely gorgeous. I have little doubt that the entire country is like that, but Toronto itself is just amazing. I mean, even the air feels cleaner there.
2. Friendly Canadians
Another stereotype, but I’ve found it to be true. My first trip there, I met two waiters at a little Turkish Restaurant on Church Street who went around with my friend and I after they got off work, and then sat down, talked, and danced with a group of five later at a club. My second trip was no less satisfying in that regard. You can’t walk down the street without getting a bunch of bright hellos, at least.
3. Yonge Street
I love Yonge Street because of its clubs and because of its small businesses. They manage to be quaint and trendy, I love it. This shop reminds me of Ann Arbor, MI, a city I also love.
4. Queer as Folk
Yeah, I said it. I’m confessing. I am a huge QAF fan and I freaked when I found out the show was taped in Toronto. Yes, I confess to trying to finagle visits to the city during taping. No, I never made it. However, the Better Half and I swear we saw Gale Harold at a rest stop McDonald’s on the Mass Pike.
5. The Real Woody’s
Oh yes. I have been there. There are pictures. The pictures are not PG. They are NSFW. Why? Because of the … adult situations on the televisions in the pictures. Woody’s was a total sausage fest, the bartender was the only one who talked to us (because he was paid to), and it was awesome sauce. Woody’s!
6. Church Street
I love the atmosphere on Church Street, I love its energy. I love the Firkin, the Village Rainbow Café, the people, the shops. I love the cross streets. I love everybody on it, every dog being walked, everything, the end.
7. The Distillery
I love this District for what it is, what it used to be, and what it will be in the future. It’s somehow edgy and new and still traditional, thanks to the architecture and the pervasive sense of history there. However, its ties to entertainment make it wicked exciting. Give me Church and Yonge and Wellesley most of the time, but I’ll take this part of downtown more than a little.
For me, Toronto is one of those cities that felt like coming home the first time I visited. I was actually the same way with Rye, New Hampshire. Have y’all ever had that happen?
Top Photo Credit: David Giral | davidgiralphoto.com