Saturday, July 28, 2007

Walking tours with my sister.

My sister and I had a great time together the past few days! We've never really hung out properly before, like friends, so this was totally unexpected and excellent. You already know how we toured Kensington and Chinatown and campus on Wednesday. Thursday we did part of the uptown Toronto discovery walk. Along the way we checked out an older part of campus, came across the Ontario Bicentenary Exhibit, discovered scenic and interesting parts of Ryerson University, visited City Hall, had ice cream, and sat under that strange OCAD building and watched kids build cardboard robots. We then went to the AGO. I quite liked some of the exhibits that are on now, especially the stuff they have from the Victoria and Albert Museum (London). That was quite awesome. My sister was intrigued by some of the modern Indian art (from India). After the gallery we made our way to Baldwin Village and ate some Chinese pastries. Yummy, but greasy. And then we walked some more, this time to check out College Street west of Spadina Ave.

Soon enough, though, we got distracted by large fibreglass moose on a rooftop and sounds of drumming coming from Kensington Market. A new store, Heart On Your Sleeve, was having an opening---I'd actually read about it that morning on Torontoist, but had of course completely forgotten---and there was a band of drummers performing outside. Random, unexpected fun! And the craziest part was that a couple minutes after we got there, I noticed a guy walking toward us . . . and it was a guy I went to high school with. We hadn't seen each other in 9 years! Now that was random. He was there to support his friend, the new store's owner.

We then continued our walk along College before heading north up Markham St. (My sister wanted to walk by Honest Ed's.) Once we reached Bloor St. I got to show her my neighbourhood. Soon enough we ran into FN and DS, who were on their way to SA's house for dinner. We didn't join them, preferring to head back to my place to rest a bit and eat leftovers. And then it was back out, me to a concert, and my sister to do more ambulatory exploring.

What concert, you ask? I went to the music faculty at U of T, where the Berlin Philharmonic Wind Quintet was playing. And it was great. Although I prefer my chamber music to be performed in churches, the lack of atmosphere was made up for by the performances. I loved loved loved the last piece the group played, Nielsen's Wind Quintet (Op. 43). And I've heard it performed before, I'm sure, but I can't remember when. It was just amazing. SO GOOD. It really blew me away.

But anyways. After the show I subwayed it back home; FN, my sister, and I finished the evening by gossiping and chatting and the like. Good day.

On Friday the three of us went down to Queen St. to show my sister some different Toronto sights. We went into a few shops, but mainly just walked and talked before deciding we needed something to eat. At the Prague Deli we ate sandwiches, drank our respective hot drinks, and finished off with marvelous pastry. It was another really nice afternoon, pretty relaxed and interesting and very Toronto. Which was just the point. To end my sister's vacation in the big city, we took the streetcar ("the streetcar is facking cool," she says in a hoser voice, quoting her favourite movie) back to the subway and parted ways.

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