Monday, September 28, 2009

Project #1 – What I miss about Toronto (second installment)

iv) Friends
When I first moved to Toronto, I didn't know a soul apart from the aunt and uncle I was staying with (in Mississauga, of all places). This, paired with the fact that networking is not exactly my forte, meant my first few weeks in the Big Smoke were quite lonely. I was fairly miserable, to be quite honest, and I hated the city as a result.

But slowly my quiet brand of fun and sparkling wit infiltrated the minds and hearts of those around me. I moved into the city proper with some great folks and forged some solid, amazing friendships that continue to flourish eight years later. I am thankful that they are the type of friendships that don't falter much through long lulls, and I have a feeling we'll be able to pick up where we left off when we do have to opportunity to get together.

Stay in touch. I miss you.

v) Ease of Getting Around
There were many, many times the TTC let me down - usually when I was in a hurry or trying to get to a Christmas party during a snowstorm (bbrrrrrr) or realized I was stranded in the wee hours after the subway shut down. Yet I remained fairly constant in my TTC fandom despite these setbacks, for the simple reason that I could get anywhere in the city with (usually) minimal effort or expense.

Toronto is also a very walkable city. From my home I could easily walk to multiple grocery stores, liquor stores, restaurants, libraries, parks and shopping. Coupled with the TTC I rarely felt the lack of a vehicle. I grew up outside a small town in Nova Scotia, where we had to drive for anything and everything. This caused me to feel rather trapped growing up, and is likely a contributing factor to the almost complete lack of friendships that have lasted from that detached era. Moving to a non-vechicle-focussed life was freeing.

I now find myself in a semi-car dependant situation - though it is far from a complete reversion, thankfully. I can still walk to work, to groceries, etc etc., but Halifax just feels like a driving city. I've already driven more in four months than I did over eight years in Toronto. And with the prospect of buying a house looming in the Spring, this will likely only increase.

vi) Recycling
Halifax doesn't recycle. It's gross.

There is a recycling program in place, but it is so convaluted and irrational that it is practically useless. So no one uses it.


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