Saturday, September 16, 2023

Out and About

When we moved to moved to our nice little condo here in Toronto, we left our Toyota Camary in Nova Scotia, only bringing my classic Alfa Spider. You really do not need a car in Toronto; the city has an excellent public transit system and we can walk to get most things we need. And our son has a car he does not use much which we can borrow if needed.  

However, there are times when you do need a vehicle, for example when you need to pick up things to furnish the condo and they are too big to carry home and certainly would not fit in the Alfa. Yesterday was one of those times. 

Fortunately, our son’s partner Ben was flying to Florida to meet up with Ryan so we offered to drive him to the airport and use their car to run errands. This ended up being a full day’s outing. 

Coffee and breakfast

Ben had to be taken to the airport at 7:00 am, and nothing we needed was open until 10:00 am, so with time to kill, we found a bakery in the area that the Google reviews said served excellent coffee. This was a great find, and the coffee was as good as the reviews. Rustic Bakery was obviously located in a VERY Italian neighbourhood and as we sat enjoying our coffee and pastry we heard more Italian spoken than English. We left with some interesting bakery products, but still had time before we could do any actual shopping. 

We decided to go to Grande Cheese, another Italian shop specializing in every type of cheese possible that opened at 9:00. They also stock lots of Italian specialist foodstuffs and we ended up leaving with over $100.00 worth of cheese and other items, but more important, we managed to kill another hour and the mall would finally be open. 

Our goal was to look for a nice comforter for our bed, as well as one to keep any guests

No comforters, but I found a Harley

comfy when they visit. But although it was suggested we look in Hudson’s Bay, we discovered that very few of their options were within our budget, and to be honest there was nothing we really liked either. 

So, we decided to try Walmart, and there we found not only much better deals. But also a nice choice of colours and styles and we left new confuters and a cart load of “stuff” we needed.

Now our next stop was an optician where Regis had an appointment to have a pair of new glasses fitted into a pair of frames she liked. Now you can get anything you need in Toronto, but today we had to cover a lot of territory to get the items we needed. Google maps got a real work-out for us to find everything; It was a 45 minute drive to the airport, then another 30 to breakfast followed by 20 minutes to the cheese shop and then 15 to the mall and 15 more to Walmart. The Optician was then back past the airport for another 30 minutes, putting us there at noon where we found a restaurant for lunch while her glasses were prepared. 

Time for lunch

Our final stop was to one of the larger IKEAs in the Toronto area. We have an IKEA within walking distance of the condo, but it is the “Downtown” store and does not stock everything and did not have the things we wanted, so that was another 40 minute drive, but at least it was back towards the condo. We filled a cart with items we wanted and loaded it all into Ryan’s Lexus, but when we went to leave an alarm went off warning us that the passengers in the back seat had not done up their seatbelts - our shopping was heavy enough to fool the car into thinking we had the children with us in the back seat, so everything had to be rearranged for the final 30 minute drive back to the condo. 

Returning the car

We got home by 3:00 pm, beating the rush hour traffic which is crazy here, and I dropped Regis off with the condo’s luggage dolly packed with our purchases while I drove the car back to Ryan & Ben’s condo and walked the five blocks back to our Toronto home. 

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