Two views of Toronto's CN Tower, one from downtown looking past the Ontario College of Art and Design's odd stilt building and one from High Park. You may have to click through to the "all sizes" link to see it in the latter.
While I am enjoying city life, I do confess to missing the forest. A little tree time today was marvelous :)
I have been very lucky to have nice places to stay while in transition! Here's the view from my current abode, taken early in the morning from the 23rd floor, and sped up:
I miss Elphinstone (a lot) how-ever I am enjoying being in Toronto right now.
This city seems new and improved from every angle compared to how I remember it was when I left for the West in 2004.
Perhaps it's just my attitude that's changed...
There is more to Hamilton, Ontario than smokestacks and steel. Here are 10 things I came to love about it during my time there:
10 - The Hamilton GO Centre
The Hamilton GO Centre is a beautiful art deco building, with an especially appealing interior (I love the font they chose for signs.) When my Internet was down, it was my favourite place to loiter with a laptop.
9 - Mex-i-Can
Mex-i-can is the best Mexican restaurant I've been to outside Mexico. Yum. Located at 107 James Street North.
8 - "The Factory"
The Factory: Hamilton Media Arts Centre is a collaborative group of filmmaking types who pool resources for space, equipment, and educational purposes. I took a screenwriting course there in the Fall that changed my life. Other creative communities could learn from this way of doing things.
7 - Locke Street
A funky street with interesting shops and an enjoyable vibe for walking down nestled at the bottom of the hill they call "The Mountain" in Hamilton. It's also the place to get bagels.
6 - James Street North
The slightly seedy, slowly gentrifying street north of downtown that hosts monthly art crawls. I predict this neighbourhood will get much nicer in the near future.
5 - Sky Dragon Centre
The Skydragon Centre is an emerging cultural centre downtown for activists, environmentalists, artists, and intellectuals. There are good hearts and minds in attendance.
4 - Waterfalls
The city is spending money trying to improve Hamilton's image by calling it "the city of waterfalls." The waterfalls are a nice surprise, and yes, they are indeed awesome.
3 - Bayfront Park
Bayfront Park is a great place to see swans, sailboats, and to find a bit of peace amidst everything.
2 - The Music Scene
There's great creativity here and many excellent bands all around. The Hamilton Music Awards were eye opening. It was here I found my rock muse.
1 - The unique flavour
It's not a suburb, it's not a big city, it's not a small town. There's an edge and evidence of decay, but it's safe and there are signs of beauty everywhere. There's history and ethnic diversity. There's nowhere else like it.
I'm glad I've had the experience of living here for 5 months. It's been character building and eye-opening. There will always be a soft spot for "the Hammer" in my heart.
In Montreal they have a wonderful public bike sharing system. There is something beautiful about seeing this sort of thing in the street!
Click on the pictures above then "all sizes" for higher resolution versions.
BIXI is the new bikestyle, truly a means of transport unto itself. It's the bike you take whenever you want and leave behind when you reach your destination. It's BIXI - now you've got wheels.
"When I see an adult on a bicycle, I do not despair for the future of the human race."" - H.G. Wells
I've been driving since Monday morning and have just one more day until I'm at my new home! I've had a great adventure which I will write about more when I've landed.
Tonight I decided to stay in a motel in Wawa, Ontario where I also had a spaghetti dinner at a nearby restaurant (which was suprisingly good!)
next time I do this drive
I will be with you
we will bring better cameras
& linger in backroads hamlets
as the flow goes
along the way
I shall hurry home
(enjoying the view)
I am having a good time in Calgary! "Three days of rain rain rain and scary driving, then I cross into Calgary, turn on the Country music station and the sun comes out across gorgeous green hills, each car beside me splattering up real rainbows of mist WOW" (quoted from Facebook)
& unlike the night before, I had a comfy place to stay with awesome friends, though I had to share with these guys:
I continue to update the photostream here.
Video travelog of the first night on the road in the move across Canada...
I took the ferry to the mainland this morning and spent the day in Vancouver with awesome old friends.
The big driving starts tomorrow...