Distractions, reflections

David Ing, at large … Sometimes, my mind wanders

2020/12 Moments December 2020

Toronto, Ontario

Riverside neighbourhood
Riverside neighbourhood: Snow outside our bedroom window onto the street for the first day of December strikes fear into morning commuters. South of Queen Street East, just east of the Don River, we have a microclimate, so precipitation melted to wetness by later in day. Three weeks to winter solstice, and then we hope for brighter days. (Riverside neighbourhood, Toronto, Ontario) 20201201
Harry Gairey Rink
Harry Gairey Rink: Parents giving children a feel of the ice with skate helper training aids, an improvement over pushing a chair around. Slower movement on the pleasure pad to the south, faster circuits on the hockey pad to the north. Artificial ice solidified with temperatures below freezing overnight, streets otherwise clear of snow. (Harry Gairey Rink, Alexandra Park, Bathurst Street, Toronto, Ontario) 20201205
Fontbonne Ministries
Fontbonne Ministries: New awnings over walkway are an adaptation for @FontbonneMin to continue services to commmunity who have to line up outside, with temperature dropping for winter. With #MustardSeed program, @CSJTO had changed from welcoming lunches inside on weekends, to providing lunches to go. On morning walk through neighbourhood, passed many multi-child strollers pushed by caregivers. (Fontbonne Ministries, Queen Street East, Riverside neighbourhood, Toronto, Ontario).
Laneway, Leslieville
Laneway, Leslieville: Who has the keys to these locks? Two posts and a chain across laneway raises questions as to whether it’s private property, or a public right-of-way that has been obstructed. Pedestrians can easily walk around, but vehicles will be deterred. (Laneway north of Queen Street East, from Carlaw Avenue eastbound to Boston Avenue, Leslieville, Toronto, Ontario) 20201208
Jimmie Simpson Park
Jimmie Simpson Park: Snowfall is transitory; snowbanks are persistent. Young children play on a small white mound while parents observe, in a familiar Canadian moment. Shovelled our sidewalk and backyard this morning, the forecast is for slightly warmer temperatures that might or might not melt the accumulation. (Jimmie Simpson Park, Queen Street East, Toronto, Ontario) 20201209
Former Union Station Bus Terminal
Former Union Station Bus Terminal: Decommissioning of terminus north of the @unionstationTO tracks, as boarding for regional @GOTransit buses move south of the tracks. The 2003 replacement for the Toronto Coach Terminal had passengers traverse outside in summer and winter, while the new gate areas promise better. No snow on ground, we have a weather reprieve for a few days. (Union Station Bus Terminal, 141 Bay Street, Toronto, Ontario) 20201210
Riverdale Collegiate Institute
Riverdale Collegiate Institute: Dormant hallways momentarily spring to life with students changing classrooms in the link between #RiverdaleCollegiateInstitute wings, looking southward. Outside the front side of the building, the small number of socially-distanced masked students suggests staggered breaktimes. Playing fields and sport courts are closed due to pandemic, with playground equipment specifically reserved for toddlers in daycare. (Riverdale Collegiate Institute, Gerrard Street East, Toronto, Ontario) 20201211
McCleary Playground
McCleary Playground: A second life for a tree, branches downward inverted from its natural history. In a garden designed for 5- to 12-year olds, children may not think the position so strange. Just east of the railway tracks by Queen Street East, this site might be altered by future transit expansions. (McCleary Playground, McGee Street, Riverside neighbourhood, Toronto, Ontario) 20201215
Toronto Eaton Centre
Toronto Eaton Centre: On Saturday afternoon before Christmas, might have normally expected busy shoppers on Yonge Street. With Province of Ontario declaring a grey zone, retail stores can offer only curbside pickup, not the usual mode for an urban mall. Drizzling rain discourages the street performers often on the sidewalk. (Toronto Eaton Centre, Yonge Street, Toronto, Ontario) 20201219
Ashbridges Bay
Ashbridges Bay: At the perimeter near the shore, patches of films of ice beginning to form in the shallows. Most boat owners seem to prefer covering their watercrafts with white, so dusk is almost monochromatic. Towards the park, parents walking with their children bundled up in snowsuits. (Ashbridges Bay, Lake Shore Boulevard East, Toronto, Ontario) 20201220
Lower Don River
Lower Don River: Looking downstream, there’s a beach on the west side with the river at a low level, that might otherwise be submerged in a flood. The Metrolinx-Go Train bridge will is to be replaced and widened with new arch bridges for the future Ontario Line. Cyclists and runners frequent the trail for exercise. (Lower Don River, Toronto, Ontario) 20201221
Devonian Pond
Devonian Pond: Loose time sees skaters in tights, player with hockey stick, child with trainer, and mother using toddler using stroller to get around the rink. Construction through campus on Gould Street now seems complete, pavement replaced by interlocking stone for pedestrians and cyclists. Hadn’t appreciated that the square with the oval pond was opened in 1978 with funding from the Devonian Foundation of Calgary. (Devonian Pond, Ryerson University, Toronto, Ontario) 20201223
High Park
High Park: Chose to walk around park on the west side, as our annual December 24 family day. Light rain in off-season, attractions shut down due to pandemic. A rare opportunity with all our sons in town, though no longer all under one roof. (High Park, West Road, Toronto, Ontario) 20201224
Woodbine Park
Woodbine Park: Finishing up afternoon walk south through park, across Woodbine Beach boardwalk, then back north towards Queen Street East. First visit to NPI and CL in apartment, condominium building with finishing touches and people moving in. Parents dragging toddlers on sleds through the snow. (Woodbine Park, Coxwell Avenue, Toronto, Ontario) 20201227

Logan Avenue, north of Dundas Street East
Logan Avenue, north of Dundas Street East: Stairs barricaded at bottom and top, alongside rail tracks for Metrolinx Lakeshore East and Stouffville corridor, pique curiosity. Walking around the block revealed large parking lots for industrial warehouses, with trees and fences barring pedestrians from danger. The planned Ontario Line will squeeze more tracks into almost the same width. (Logan Avenue, north of Dundas Street East) 20201229

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