I am back in Toronto and a recurring thought during my near two weeks here is how good we got it in Whitehorse when it comes to getting around the city.
It is one of those things we all take for granted.
How often has a “Porter Creeker” been told by a “Riverdal-ite” that they won’t be coming to the potluck because the commute is too far?
Fair enough … having to cross town and head up the hill and all (insert bold sarcasm here).
Sounds ridiculous, but we’ve all been both a victim and/or guilty of it.
To be honest, I hadn’t given it much thought until by return back to the T-dot, that’s what the hipsters call it … and posers like me.
Riding the street car, you feel like somewhere between a pair of worn socks being stuffed in the already over-stuffed drawer or one of a few dozen grapes.
You just hang there, next to the other grapes.
It’s crowded, it’s smelly and it’s usually stressful.
No eye contact is made and everyone has a white cord of some kind hanging from their ear.
They look like candles just waiting to have their wicks lit, igniting perhaps a smile or — dare I say? — a hello!
The monotone voice comes on … “Next stop, Yonge Street”.
The brakes squeal, the doors open and dozens shuffle off as dozens more shuffle in.
It is the way of TO transport.
From subway, to streetcar to bus.
Off and then on, swipe your pass and repeat.
Occasionally one grape will bump another but heaven forbid if it does.
Rookies, like me, will nod their head and smile, but it is not customary in these parts.
It is not because they are mean people, it is just the way it is.
These people are, for the most part, strangers after all.
A far contrast from the routine “Main Street Chats” in Whitehorse.
Yes, while we don’t have the luxury of lanes in the winter or public transport on Sundays, overall we are spoiled in the North when it comes to getting from A to B.
Should we really call the 10-minute morning drive out of Riverdale “the crawl”? Contemplate honking the horn when a pedestrian steps out to cross the street? or cancelling dinner dates because … it’s just too far?
What would a Torontonian say if they got word of this?
Don’t worry, I’ll keep it to myself.
But just know that in the centre of Canada – The Big Smoke — where all that is hip goes down, thousands of people are suffering every day.
By the time you’ve hit snooze three times, grabbed your soy latte and logged onto Facebook from your the cozy confines of your office, many in “Tahranuh” are just halfway to work, their eyes down with the rest of the grapes, their daily commute only half over.