It's Wednesday night and I've just spent a delicious night in downtown T.O. Well, not in the downtown core but on the outskirts but it was delicious just the same. My yentas and I spent the evening waxing poetic over a three-course meal at one of Toronto's top spots, North 44 on Yonge St. It was part of the city's Summerlicious promotion where the city's restaurants and its plethora of culinary experts offer a tasting - a three-course tasting - of some of their best recipes. I want to go again before Summerlicious' end this Sunday, but next time I'll check out another place. There are so many more restaurants than the usual Swiss Chalet or Montana's and I'd like to try them all.
I live in the suburbs -- yes, I'm a suburbanite. Always have been, having lived in the bedroom community of Brampton since I was knee-high to a zygot. But, I used to spend every weekend downtown, usually in one of the clubs where I would stay past close before moving on to an after-hours party.
I take the car into the city occasionally now, usually keeping my vehicle west of the 401 (I needed the GPS tonight, I'm so directionally illiterate). This wasn't always the case. I used to dream of living downtown, preferably in a loft close to the subway line. I longed for a downtown job, with downtown friends and downtown dreams, the city my playground. My friend Magnet asked me tonight where I could imagine myself living if I wasn't in Brampton. It wasn't that long ago that Toronto was always top on my list, followed by Edinburgh, Montreal and even Ottawa. But tonight, I couldn't think of an answer. Have I really changed that much? I hadn't thought so but now I'm really not sure.
What job would I have? Would I be the artistic, writer type sitting in a floor-to-ceiling glass high-rise? Or on a rooftop patio, my patio of my re-furbished warehouse loft? Or how about in a small, war-time house with not enough space and no parking, but incredible architecture? Would I be working on a major daily newspaper, or working for a monthly magazine?
Regardless of my position, I know that I would be enjoying the city to the fullest. Suburbs seem to be so spread out, and Brampton's case, the roads are just as crowded here than they would be downtown. The reason? Our bus system sucks and it takes two to three hours to get anywhere. In Toronto, your favourite coffee shop is usually just down the street - a five- to 10-minute walk even in the worst weather. And, I'd get to enjoy more nights like these, without the 40-minute drive home on two major highways.
Toronto is definitely Summerlicious and I look forward to exploring more of the city. Will it be a place where I'll permanently rest my head? That remains to be seen. Until then, I'll enjoy the rest of this great promotion. Bring on the scallops, yentas. Scribe has a rumblin' in the tummy only scallops in a curry-coriander-okra infusion can satisfy.