Downtown Toronto

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I will always remember the first time I came to Toronto.

It was in 2002, after our crazy long trip from Mexico to Brazil. I had never been to North America before and I wanted to see Canada, so I flew back to Toronto with Feng. It was February and I didn’t have any warm clothes after a few months in Latin America. The only jacket I had was a thin leather jacket I had bought in Argentina during the Peso crisis. Feng had warned me: it was going to be cold.

We flew from Rio de Janeiro to Houston, and then from Houston to Toronto. I stood in the airport’s arrival lounge for a few minutes mustering the courage to step out. It didn’t look that cold.

I walked outside and started to cough. The air was so dry and the wind was so cold it felt as though I had walked right into a giant freezer. My skin was burning and I couldn’t keep my hands out of my pockets for more than two seconds. We took the subway and walked to an hostel. Later that night, we had a North American style meal in a small dinner. It smelled of wood and coffee. I loved it.

We walked around in the Eaton Center, had a coffee at Starbucks, spotted fun graffitis and observed people. A few days later, we had taken the Greyhound to Ottawa.

Every time I go to Toronto, it reminds me of my first time in Canada. Back then, I had no clue I would eventually immigrate there, and then become Canadian. Funny how life turns out sometimes.

The Eaton Center

The Eaton Center

Shopping Around Boxing Day

Bay Street

Bay Street

Bay Street

The CN Tower

Building Buildings...

Canadian Multiculturalism: French and Chinese Restaurants

Underground Passages

The Crashed Car

Mailboxes With Postal Codes

Mailboxes With Postal Codes


About Author

French woman in English Canada. World citizen, new mom, traveler, translator, writer and photographer. Looking for comrades to start a new revolution.


  1. I like that mailbox with postal codes. Very creative.

    I haven’t really been to Toronto’s downtown because I was more interested in the outskirts, with all those yummy restaurants.

  2. Hi, Zhu
    I really enjoyed browsing through your blog and reading your interesting life in Canada! Very impressive that you have a lovely Chinese name. You have learned Chinese for 12 years! Great for you!

  3. Ha ha… Who knows you might become British one day?!
    The most difficult part to overcome would be food!
    Is Canadian food any better than French?

    Kaleidoscope of Summer / 夏天的万花筒 / Kaleidoskop Musim Panas / 夏の万華鏡

    I like to be random and different. Ha ha

    Villa on the peninsular / 半岛的别墅 / Vila di semenanjung / 半島の別荘

    Ha ha… It’s owned by businessman who also runs his restaurant up the hill.

    Animals in the Maze / 迷宫里的动物 / Haiwan di dalam Pagar Sesat / 迷路の中の動物

    I had to fire my flash to get the butterfly photo. Did you see its shadow?

    Mr & Mrs Gold / 金夫妇 / Tuan Emas & Isteri / 金夫妻

    Korean is catching up! Here in London, we have more and more Korean restaurants!
    I quite like them – it’s rather spicy!
    .-= London Caller´s last blog ..Kaleidoscope of Summer / 夏天的万花筒 / Kaleidoskop Musim Panas / 夏の万華鏡 =-.

  4. haha. your story is so funny!
    when i lived in idaho, we got a lot of tourists visiting to go skiing.
    they *know* snow is cold, right?
    but we could always tell which tourists came from california because they came with open-toed shoes! crazy.
    .-= Seraphine´s last blog ..Girl Cooties =-.

  5. @Guillermo – I feel the same about Toronto. I love visiting it but for a few practical reasons, not sure if I’d live there.

    @Agnes – That’s so true!

    @Bluefish – I’m the opposite, I always hang out downtown! It’s my European side 😉

    @Nigel Babu – These are all the Canadian postal code. First time I see such a mailbox!

    @micki – Hi and thank you for visiting! Chinese language brought me so much… I love it even though I spent way too many hours writing characters.

    @Sidney – That too 😆

    @London Caller – Well, I must admit I still like some French food better. Bu there is so much variety here that I don’t miss l’art culinaire français that much. Just smelly cheese a bit.

    @Soleil – And it was really unexpected for me… I sometimes feel bad but I sort of “ended up” here and I see some immigrants who had planned to move here for a few years. I arrived, went through immigration and had no idea of anything actually!

    @Tulsa Gentleman – I think I do fear change but I know I must embrace it. And I try to experience and to not think to much about it.

    @Seraphine – No way! Open shoes…? Wow! Or maybe they are Canadians. I still see the occasional Canadian wearing shorts right now even though it’s -10C.

    @Lizz – No 3D, it’s an actual diorama (hey I learned a word tonight!). It’s actually the CTV building the TV channel.

  6. I like the crashed car and the mailbox with all the writing. It’s funny how you get used to one country’s mailboxes, and police cars for that matter. Even police sirens. It’s the little things like that that strike me when I’m in Europe or abroad… those funny differences.
    .-= Seb´s last blog ..New Tshirts for Sale! =-.

  7. You just brought back some sweet childhood memories for me. I love Eaton Center and Bay and York Sts. and Eddie’s Warehouse (restaurant), the Plaza II hotel (with the swimming pool on the top floor)…

    I must make it back there again when we go up and visit the falls.

    Thanks for sharing all these great photos, too! They’re awesome!
    .-= Ily´s last blog ..misery loves company =-.

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