you know whats the bomb? this city! that's right TO, i'm talking to you!

i may have been born and raised in our nations capital, but its the provinces capital that has my heart.

TO i love you.
as a token of my affection and in an effort to continuously fuel this lovefire, i have a weekly ritual/ date with this city booked into my calendar.
every saturday when i awake to a full weekend on my plate i GMST and head out to the st lawrence market.

(meat shop picture)
beyond the obvious need for local produce and all things tasty, this trip, 45 minutes on hoof in each direction, is primarily an excuse to see whats new on the streets of my favourite ville.
i call it "checking it out with a weekly check in"

a key component of the weekly check in is route variance.
every saturday a new maze is woven across the core of the city as i meander eastward.
no matter the route, there is one consistency:
the evidence of 905ers gone by mark the cityblocks from bathurst to university on every avenue from queen south.
the silence they have left behind fills with smiling locals. urbanites taking back their city for the daylight hours before the next swarm funnel off the gardiner and DVP.

eventually i merge into the denser pedestrian traffic radiating in all directions from the market.
the buzz of those recently fed and watered at a handful of local brunching venues as they excitedly scurry into the market building makes me smile.
we dont need to come here for our produce. we dont need to pay more (sometimes double) for our olives and antipasti.
we come here because we can. because this city offers us tourist-like entertainment and services every day. because the st lawrence market and nathans phillips square, high park and little italy, kensington market, trinity bellwoods, the danforth and queen west, queen east, and the beaches are gifts our city keeps giving and we use our precious spare time to take them in.

an hour later i emerge onto front st. arms weighed down by overpriced produce and an unnecessary load of jams and jellies (considering i dont really eat bread) i sigh with satisfaction.

on the walk home i pass a woman preaching about the end of days and daring armageddon to "just try". but as i approach her preaching slows and stops. as she falls asleep standing up.
and it warms my heart.

until next week... XO XO TO