I left work early today to go get my teeth cleaned at my dentist in the Beaches. I enjoyed the ride on the infamous Queen streetcar. Infamous for a couple of reasons – one of them is the fact that the cars are always late, always getting tied up with the traffic, as they don't have a dedicated lane on Queen Street; further complicated by it being the longest streetcar route in North America. When I lived out in the Beaches, I had many a long wait for that car.
Later, Ceri and I met up with brother Scott and sister-in-law Jennifer, who came in from Washington to spend Easter with my family in St. Catharines, and taking a brief, baby-less couple of days in Toronto. We walked over to Il Fornello on King Street and had dinner with Carly and Kelsey. Great fun, great visit. So fun, I forgot to take a picture.
The four of us left Scott and Jen at their hotel and went to Fionn's where we met up with Cathy who had just finished working a Leafs game.
Sunday we go to check out the Rockabilly Brunch at the Dominion on Queen. It’s afternoon by the time we get out the door and we’d already had a late breakfast but we thought we’d partake in rockabilly sans food. The temperature is dropping but the sun is out, and it’s a fun walk I hadn’t done before.
Later, we're sitting there chatting and admiring the pretty and slightly dive-y (in a good way) joint and enjoying the music, when Ceri points out an old soul that has stopped at the window in the street behind the band and is staring in, mouth open, as if she's never seen anything so bizarre as four musicians standing in a window playing rockabilly.
She stands there agape, then stomps over to a different window and stares in some more. She's got the hood from a hoody underneath her coat pulled over her head. Her face in the corner of the window, mouth only closing long enough to take a drag of her cigarette and release the smoke in a frigid cloud that hangs sluggish around her head.
I wonder what's got her so taken with the Sunday afternoon happenings in the bar. She looks like she's probably a neighbourhood resident, and certainly music is a regular event at this spot; not as bizarre as it reflects on her face.
Okay, she's not in possession of all her faculties, but I still wonder what's captured her attention so. I think maybe she's remembering a past life, in which she’d frequent a place like this – maybe even the Dominion on Queen – and enjoyed music in the company of a circle of other locals. Or maybe she was even a singer once. Or fancied a young bloke like that singer in the rockabilly band.
Maybe she would come here on a Sunday afternoon, a warm place to go on a cold day.
I'm imagining all this and writing the moment down and when I look up she's gone. And I think, whatever the story, I like the idea of residents old and new being so much a part of their community’s fabric that they are in tune with every nuance; take interest in every whisker of activity. I think that it’s most likely that old lady was just participating in Rockabilly Brunch like the rest of us.
Community – in all corners of a city – beautiful thing number eighty-seven.
Tonight, after work, I went shopping. I want some new clothes. THAT is another sign of spring, feeling as if I can't live another minute with the current wardrobe. Yes, spring is coming, I'm sure of it now.
I didn't buy anything. Nada. But I dawdled on the way home, thinking, again, that I can feel spring in the air. While dawdling, I took some pictures.
Today it's very mild (+7C) and I walk downtown the long way to get a birthday gift for a certain youngest daughter who turns 27 on Sunday. I admire the Hockey Hall of Fame building, as I always do when I walk by it. Front Street at Yonge, Toronto.
Hudson's Bay Company, Queen Street between Bay and Yonge, Toronto. It's the oldest company in North America, but no longer Canadian-owned. I'm not sure who it belongs to now, but it's still a nice store to shop in. Don't tell Kelsey where I was was.