One thing I have learned about blogging is that people LOVE Top Ten lists. My recent post entitled “Top Ten Things I Have Learned About Toronto” ( https://hotaruchan20.wordpress.com/2014/11/28/top-ten-things-i-have-learned-about-toronto/ ) was one of my most popular entries ever. And so, dear readers, here is another Top Ten list for your reading pleasure: my Top Ten Memorable Moments of 2014.
1. The Deep Freeze.
I am guessing that most of you have chosen to forget the Deep Freeze of January 2014.
That photo was taken INSIDE of my spare room window on January 2nd, 2014. It was minus thirty five that morning.
The cold weather continued all week, ending with temperatures of -35 on January 6th and -30 on January 7th. Brrrrrrrr!!
February 5th, 2014 saw a tremendous amount of snow fall on Toronto.
(See https://hotaruchan20.wordpress.com/2014/02/06/a-very-colourful-snowy-day/ for more photos).
The winter had been a hard and cold one up until then, and the +30cm snowfall that day let us know that we were in it for the long haul. Minus twenty and below temperatures continued throughout February, and spring arrived extremely late.
3. Visiting the High Park Cherry Blossoms.
Cherry trees usually bloom in April, but due to the hard winter and late spring, it didn’t happen this year until mid-May. It was possible that the trees might not have blossomed at all. So when it finally happened, it was met with much happiness and relief.
For more photos of the blossoms, visit https://hotaruchan20.wordpress.com/2014/05/20/high-park-cherry-blossoms-sakura-2014/
4. Meeting a baby reindeer at High Park.
Ok, I am a sucker for baby animals. (I think we all are – some of us might just be keeping it a secret). This happened at High Park the same day I went to see the cherry blossoms. Because we had just finished a long, hard, psychologically draining winter, meeting this sign of new life really lifted my spirits.
5. Attending an Indigenous Arts Festival.
I had never been to a native arts festival or a pow-wow before, and I was completely amazed by it. This particular festival was held at Fort York in mid-June. If you are at all interested in dance, art, or native culture, I highly recommend going to an event like this.
For more photos of this event, visit https://hotaruchan20.wordpress.com/2014/06/27/indigenous-arts-festival/ .
6. Going back in time for a day at the Gatsby Garden Party.
I really enjoy theme parties, and this one at Spadina House was probably the best one I have ever been to. I truly felt as if I had stepped back in time to the 1920s for an afternoon.
For more photos, visit https://hotaruchan20.wordpress.com/2014/07/03/gatsby-garden-party-at-spadina-house/
7. Biking, Hiking, and Kayaking along the Humber River.
You can bike, hike, or kayak along the Humber River all the way from Eglinton Flats Park (near Eglinton and Jane) to Lake Ontario (at the Humber Bay Bike Bridge/Palace Pier Park).
You could actually start in Vaughan (near Steeles and Kipling) and then go all the way down to the lake, but that requires more endurance than I think most of us have 🙂
This route takes you down the Humber River past James Gardens, Lambton Park, Etienne Brule Park, and Humber Marshes Park, ending at Lake Ontario. From the mouth of Lake Ontario, you can travel along the Waterfront Trail (going westbound to the beautiful Humber Bay Park), or along the Martin Goodman Trail (heading east).
It is a great way to spend a day!
8. Attending the Toronto International Film Festival.
This year I worked for the Film Festival and attended many films during my time there. I like to think of myself as a cinephile, so eating, sleeping and breathing films leading up to and during Festival was like a dream come true.
I didn’t get a chance to see all of the 200 + films that I would have liked to 🙂 but I did watch many great films that I probably would never have gotten a chance to see otherwise. And as one of the premier film festivals in the world, TIFF is never short on excitement.
For more about TIFF and the films I saw this year, visit https://hotaruchan20.wordpress.com/2014/09/20/toronto-international-film-festival-2-festival-street-and-the-tiff-bell-lightbox/ and https://hotaruchan20.wordpress.com/2014/09/16/toronto-international-film-festival-1-film-reviews/
9. Going to Nuit Blanche for the first time.
Nuit Blanche is a free all-night arts event held annually in early October in downtown Toronto. I was very impressed by the sheer scale of the event and by the many outstanding installations.
For more Nuit Blanche photos, visit https://hotaruchan20.wordpress.com/2014/10/08/nuit-blanche-2014/
10. YOUR favourite 2014 memory!
Once again, I am leaving #10 up to you! What was your favourite moment or memory of Toronto in 2014? Please share! I would love to hear from you all 🙂
A Happy New Year to everyone!