Toronto is a mix of everything and not much.
Coming from Europe, this is a young city. The place looks so polished. Given its newness, you might think it lacks identity. Well not so for Toronto.
The plane touches down with fine precision after gliding over the local CN tower landmark. They say (Canadian rapper) Drake placed this city on the map. I can list at least 3 others who did this as well.
I got into the cab. We headed for the city center. Approaching its majestic skyline, I recall seeing it in videos and pictures many times before. Luscious buildings, lights all over, elegance and sexiness. I'm already feeling this place.
No conferences and no work for me on this trip. I was looking forward to enjoying this holiday, in this city I randomly picked from a map. What to I do? Where do I go? I will have so much time on my hands. My head was filling with ideas. So many things could happen in this new country. Who will I meet? No one here knows knows me. All my insecurities fade away. Well not all, but hey, let a girl dream a little.
The people here are generally quite nice. From intros by other Canadian friends, I met up with a bunch of locals. Boy, can these guys party. We hit the clubs. It was lines, drinks and tours around the DJ booth. We were on. We were on cloud "Party", every single night!
Call me easygoing, adventurous and fun loving. But, after a few nights of clubbing, this was getting old. I was starting to get frustrated. I wish I could say "no" to clubbing every night. My feeling of regret having connected with this bunch was growing. I had a different idea of having a good time.
A walk in the park, a good heartfelt talk or a couple of beers by the lake would have been really enjoyable. But here, I was stuck in another club with a bunch of people I didn’t really know and could not really relate to. Another night in this city got wasted.
A brand new night, but Mr DJ spins the same song for the 100th time. I headed outside for some air. I sat on the stairs and got my phone out. Oops, just realized that I did not have data roaming. Things were getting boring and annoying. "Silvia, why are you like that?", I said to myself. "You dream about impossible things, and when a path shows up, you turn your face". I was playing it safe.
A gigantic Harley Davidson in front of me caught my gaze. I love motorbikes. I simply have a genuine obsession for how cool people look on them in their leather jackets, making everyone turn their heads as they revved the turbo engines.
As I looked up, with my thoughts probably written all over my face, this guy on the majestic Harley was chuckling at me.
“Hey you like this bike? Wanna go for a ride?”
"Hahhaha," I laughed in my head. Imagine if I had actually said "hahha" out loud. “YES!” I said, firmly but so awkwardly.
I immediately regretted answering. What was I doing?!
Soon, I was riding a Harley Davidson with a random stranger taking me for a sightseeing tour of the city.
I couldn’t believe I actually said yes. I still think about it - the things you say yes to when you are so bored.
Was I being irresponsible? Yes. Was I trusting people too much? Yes. Did I get an incredible bike tour and a heartfelt conversation with a stranger by the CN tower that night? YES!
I couldn’t have asked for more.