Thursday, June 30, 2011

Just a few More TiDBitS ... Travel Tips, we'll say ...

Hello !! We are just back from a trip to Toronto and ... guess what ? ... I learned some things !! Now, I like to share these tidbits because I never seem to learn things the easy way ... always (seem to ) prefer the hard way ... just saving you the trouble ...;)

1. Digging, sodding a huge lawn, and other assorted manual labour every night for two weeks before a vacation may be a bad idea ... it may hinder your energy levels and really infringe on the fun factor ... you may even fall asleep during a dream concert ... (Sorry James Taylor ... it wasn't you !)

2. Three and a half hours sleep does NOT prepare you for a 22 hour day ... nope, does not.

3. If you are not usually an egg eater I would advise you NOT to eat them twice in a day as you may later vomit them up ... and it will make you even less of an egg eater.

4. And , just on the vomit prep strategy, (because you never know when it could happen) , try to avoid getting on a packed, PACKED bus and then having to fight your way back off for that very reason.

5. And, if this should occur, try to take a good look before getting off that bus ... you may have chosen a NON STOP that is by REQUEST ONLY from IN the bus ... and it may be 1.5 hours from your hotel, at midnight , with nothing around. Just sayin ...

6. Keep your knees out of the way. You'll smell better.

7. If you have a problem with heat & pressure hives , DO NOT go to a city in the summer and then walk for miles & miles & miles ... I can send pictures if you need a visual ...

8. Now this is actually a PLEASANT lesson !! If you go down to the Harbourfront to catch a ferry to Centre Island with, oh, 5000 of your closest friends and a few 1000 others that you don't know as well ... GIVE UP !!!
Photobucket (that's the "line" over to the little blue toll booth that you see in the background ... then there are 3x as many people on the other side waiting for the ferry ...)
And then add another $3.50 to what you were going to pay, walk 5 minutes down the boardwalk, stumble across a private water taxi, slip him $10 each, and BOB'S YOUR UNCLE !! You are on Centre Island in 5 minutes !!! ( haha suckers !!)

9. Renting a quadracycle SEEMS like an awesome idea ... until 30 minutes later when you are at the farthest point of the island and you realize you (who hasn't pedalled a bike in 20+ years) have to pedal all the way back .... creak ... groan... puff ... pant ...

10. Street food rocks. But don't assume that all the signs at the street booth are foods that are right there being cooked. Order a few Tacos El Pastor and you may find yourself schlepping through a grocery store, out back, to a tiny little kitchen, passing a ticket to "Pedro" and standing in the boiling hot kitchen for 40 minutes for "quick" street food. Hmmm ...

11. When they inform you that your subway car will not be continuing along and you must leave - do so. And when they then add that you are to evacuate the subway station in a calm & orderly fashion ... do so. And when you emerge from the ground and are met by firemen rushing in with pry bars and axes, a sea of firetrucks and police cars, and the radio barking "WE HAVE A PLAN B, A PLAN B!!" .... try to find another route.

12. And when you do get an all clear and try to return to the subway, through the back door - the ONLY door you have ever seen - and the police stop you and order you to go ... don't. Reach into your reserve, remember how many hours you have been up and how many miles you have walked, think about the concert you are going to, think about the fact that you have no earthly idea where the other entrances are and that your feet are now too hivey and sore to walk another mile around the block ... stand there and yell back . Tell them you were told by the "man with the phone to come back " and that "you have no idea where the other entrances are" ... it worked for us.

So that's my tips !! And before you think we had a bad trip ... no ! It was great ... just a few technical difficulties !!

We sang "How Sweet It Is To Be Loved By You" with James Taylor and thousands of others ... awesome !! ( And yes, exhaustion , eggs, smelly hot dog breath from hundreds of people, hot hot cramped buses, .... all added up to me pushing my way off a bus and standing on the side of the road 2 hours from downtown Toronto barfing my face off. And yes, it was a request only stop in a desolate area but we did meet up with some other concert goers and eventually walked to a bus stop where we boarded a bus that made 28 stops before we got to the subway and finally got home at about 1 am ... 21 hours from when we left home !!)

We went to Centre Island ... a magical haven right next to a city ... we rode a freaky bike and saw beautiful things. We enjoyed the charming old fashioned amusement park and imagined what it must have been like back in the day when the rich & famous summered there. Wonderful !!

We spent an afternoon in Kensington Market - one of my favourite places ever. The crowds, the music, the dancers, fire jugglers, the street sized Scrabble game, shopping at Blue Banana, visiting Al Waxman's statue,
eating Tacos El Pastor, the most delectable pie EVER at Wanda's Pie in the Sky.... sigh .... heavenly.

Strolling down Spadina, visiting China Town, Queen Street and my other Fave - The Paper Place ... oooh, I get so excited by paper clip penguins, cat bookmarks, fun paper, coloured tape .... be still my heart !!

So it was a great trip but we were happy to come home. Because, you see , we love our life here too !


Merrilee said...

Pam, you are such a great storyteller, you make even the bad things sound fun. LOL

pam said...

I am hoping that I made vomiting sound sexy ... HAHAHA !!! It sure wasn't !! My only consolation was "at least nobody knows me!!" lol.

Meg said...

You really have an interesting

... a few of my favourite things ...