Posted in Canada

Summer Trip to Toronto

View of the Toronto skyline from Centre Island.

One of the joys of being a newly-single parent is that I’m now solely responsible for taking care of our son when he’s sick, off school or there’re no camps in session. This summer there was one week where he had nothing going on, so I decided to take advantage of the time off and visit some friends of ours from our first post in Belize who are now stationed in Toronto.

This being our first time leaving the country without his father, I found out from Canadian immigration that I had to have documentation to prove that I wasn’t trying to kidnap my own child and spirit him away overseas. I was a little stressed about this at first, but by the time the trip came around, I had all my ducks in a row, and in the end…no one even asked…and we had a fabulously smooth and fun adventure.

We hadn’t seen our Toronto friends in five years, and our boys had been best friends when they were toddlers. So I was very happy to see them hit it off again, now bonding over their favorite video games, while us moms relaxed, drank a bit of wine and got caught up on all the details of half a decade of family life. The boys got to sleep in bunk beds in the same room, so A was super excited, and I had the rare opportunity to sleep in a room by myself and not get up until after 8am.

While our prime motivation was just to visit, we also got a chance to see a bit of the city, which is convenient since it’s on the projected 2020 bid list as a potential next post. Our first day out, we made it to the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM) with a stop at the Duke of York pub for lunch.

Royal Ontario Museum, photo courtesy of Wikipedia.
Kids being kids inside the ROM.

Another day we took a water taxi over to Centre Island, spent some time at the Centreville Amusement Park and let the kids change into their swimsuits and cool off in the water at Chelsea Beach and again at the Lakeshore Splash Pad. On other days we visited the Toronto Zoo, had lunch at a lovely Italian restaurant called Terroni (yumm!) and tagged along on their meet-the-teacher event at the kids’ school (also excellent for potential school research).

Waiting for the swan boats on Centre Island.
Splashing in the water at Chelsea Beach.

In the end we were very sad to go, and my big boy was visibly fighting tears and rubbing his eyes in the car on the way to the airport. It’s amazing how nourishing it can be for your soul to rekindle special friendships. And I will always be thankful for the wonderful friends we have made in the Foreign Service and the life that allows our paths to continue to cross. Love you all!!