This amazing trip was made possible by the generous funding and backing of the most kindhearted people in the world. Canada. There is something profoundly beauteous about this place; a specific aura glissades everywhere and entices any foreigner with its welcoming caress. The milieu that permeates itself throughout this place entails a gentle, pragmatic, benign citizenry that is imponderably different than that of the United States. The locals I had the pleasure of acquainting myself with possessed such a great facade of benevolence, one of which I had not seen before in the presentation of oneself as a stranger. The most analogous kind of persona I can relate the locals I’ve met here to are the ones I’ve had the pleasure of meeting down in Colombia. The two are very similar in their idiosyncrasy; only differing in their socioeconomic conditions. Nevertheless- the people, environment, and aura of the cities I’ve traveled to represent an archetypal society that consists of a benevolent, clean, and beautiful idiosyncrasy. I visited two cities in Canada, Toronto and Ontario (Niagara Falls). Let me take you along.
Oh, Toronto. The myriad of experiences I indulged in have proven to be extremely dense with value, in lieu of
my ephemeral consummation of the city, which was a mere three days. I remember as we were driving into the depths of downtown Toronto that I noticed the enormity of its buildings, it was something wondrous. The architectural qualities of the city enticed me lovingly with its intrinsic blend of archaic and contemporary characteristics. I beamed at the beautiful architectural pieces of art as they loomed over me, covering me in welcoming azure shadows. The sun was setting drowsily when we arrived, and its golden blanket draped the city in its sedative wisp of nocturnal transition. It was through an elapsed amount of time that I came to the confounding revelation that the sun set at 8:55 PM in Canada. It made me swoon even more- my love for this place was uncontrived and prolific. Toronto presented itself with a welcoming gesture, one of which managed to entice me with its awe-inspiring architecture and eclectic cultures. It was a metropolitan oasis that was surrounded by suburban and rural communities, which eventually branched out to massive landscapes and forests. I deemed Toronto to be “the city of green & blue”, because (1) the city was infested with vegetation and trees alike, (2) the skies were unrealistically blue, a blue so blue- it made me blue to think of how boring our sky is in Southern California. The lake that bordered the city was Lake Ontario- a lake so enormous, it was impossible to see the other side of it. It made me think of oblivion- something I find strangely intriguing. The kind of people that I encountered in Toronto were so diverse in their idiosyncratic values, it was something very different than what I had been used to (conservative, suburban Corona). My assimilation to the kind of people there, which were individually aesthetic in their own ways, was analogous to that of my venture in Pasadena, CA, which can be read here. There were streets for libertarian enthusiasts who embraced difference with a unified brand of pride, and other streets for touristic consumers who fed off the overpriced goods with a divisive competition of financial deprivation. I had the opportunity to people-watch everyday, so these analyses are delineated with accuracy. The architecture that Toronto bombarded me with was one of absolute beauty and perfection. I have an innate appreciation for architecture, one of which I have not been able to find the origin of. It’s an appreciation that has no specific desire of pursuit- I’m rudimentarily attracted to the visual stimulation and artistry behind architecture. The oceanic streets of this city swayed me to the contiguous reach of its mountainous buildings and structures- the cascading shadows of metropolitan nature swooped me from my indoctrinated perception of traditional architecture and carried me to a new place of contemporary, shrewd creation. The districts ranged from archaic to modern, and the oasis’s of anachronistic structures in lieu of the surrounding cosmopolitan aura proved to be particularly intriguing for their lasting beauty. Nevertheless, the blend of these two architectural spectrums made me swoon with a splendid delight of visual stimulation.
Two snippets of what happened in Toronto
In the elevator on the way down from our hotel room, a young lady came in. With her luggage in hand, she told us that she had a flight to catch. She seemed rather anxious to leave, yet still happy to be in anticipation of it, as indicated when she told us that she’s going to Amsterdam. It was fascinating to have crossed paths with her on such an intimate level within such an enormous world- it provoked me to once again realize the innumerable stories that are occurring around us everyday and everywhere we go.
I was on Yonge St. (one of the longest streets in the world, as well as Canada’s Time Square) one rainy afternoon, taking some pictures of the eccentric urban environment. I was approached by an African-American man, in his twenties or so, with a skinny, affable figure to him; with his thick accent, he implored me to take a picture of him. I was rather surprised by his spontaneous inclination to have his picture taken by a complete stranger, but I acquiesced joyfully and took it. He thanked me a million times and adulated my picture, it was a joy so exuberant, I began to question if this man was being sardonic. Not soon after, another African-American man, who looked much older and had a stocky, buff figure to him approached us, and along with him came a brown-skinned man who was dressed rather pretentiously with vibrant colors. I took a picture of these three strangers, and they told me about a charity they worked for (care.ca). We said our goodbyes and walked off into the twisting streets of Toronto. Two of them were from Ghana, and the other lived in Italy. It was an awesome experience.