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Sunday, September 03, 2006

my life en rose

It's 2 a.m. and I'm pressing my fork through the cheesecake infront of me.

The fork breaks apart the thick white filling, which crumbles to the side, and I glide it over the top to pick up some caramel.

I'm at a bar/bakery in the Annex, catching up with a girl I met in Paris, and filling a late night craving for cake. Her brother sits beside her, delicately spoons a few mouthfulls, and lets us finish off the rest of his. His friend, to my left, talks on his cell phone at high speed and polishes off his pie.

I love Toronto. From the moment I arrived, I knew I was home.

Slowly our big, dirty, 3 bedroom apartment is taking form. My small room suits me. It leads out into the giant den, where a TV sits on our new IKEA TV set-which I put together the wrong way, an attempt to be productive when I should have been sleeping- and a big table from my aunt sits on the other side of the room. We're still waiting for a big floral beast of a sofa from my grandma.

Boxes are everywhere. Yesterday we started at Value Village, picking up cheap home furnishings at student prices. Next we stuffed ourselves into a U-Haul, drove to a prison-like storage building, picked up one of my roomates' things, and lugged her heavy furniture up into our humble abode. Wanting to take advantage of the U-Haul, we were soon at IKEA, filling up on the bare necessities, and running around like headless chickens with our carts before closing.

Deep breath. We've been busy. I've already acquired a subway pass, a student card, a cell phone, a wok and an ironing board. I'm on the road to success baby.

And all the while Toronto sits there: colourful, edgy, dirty, alive and cultural.

I bought baskets in Chinatown, met a stripper named Hugo, then walked down to the metro, where two buskers played "La Vie en Rose".

It is la vie en rose. Even lugging furniture in the rain I couldn't help but smile. This is life, freedom, happiness. I have room to grow here.

Tonight a friend comes over to make cocktails and help me write cover letters for restaurants that may never hire me. Except for I like to think I'd be wanted anywhere.

Toronto. If I can make it here, as a journalist, I guess I may make it anywhere. But it's up to me.


Anonymous Joy said...

Gill, if you can make it (living) in Paris you can make it anywhere. I think that becoming a journalist will be easy for you. You are a go-getter! I wish you much success and happiness in your new environs and on this new journey.

7:53 AM  
Blogger Georgia said...

Toronto is an incredible city. I just got home to Montreal a few days ago, and I left with a heavy heart, knowing that Toronto was the place I was actually supposed to be. Hopefully I'll be able to come visit you a few times this year.

8:47 AM  
Blogger Wenda said...

Welcome home, Gill! I have many childhood memories of Toronto, but probably none as vivid as the adult ones you are already creating. I am eager to see more of Toronto through your eyes.

12:29 PM  
Blogger ayah young said...

gill! an ironing board!!!!
such fond memories of collaboration.
don't start ironing your jeans.

2:28 PM  
Blogger Sky said...

What a life you are having - Paris, the UK, now Toronto!
A journalist?! Sounds like a very interesting career plan. Print or television?

I miss my college days - what delightful freedom those years contained! Such adventures and joys. I will be keeping up with your adventures along the way - some fun reading ahead I am sure! :)

12:12 AM  
Blogger Dehilly said...

Gill, you can achieve whatever you put your mind to accomplish.
I think that everyone that reads your entries knows that you face every challenge with determination, passion and creativity.
As Joy said, if you survived and flourished in Paris, then life back in your ‘home’ of Toronto will be a conquerable quest.
I have confidence in you ability to cope with University and Life in all its gory glory. Your writing speaks vastly of your developing maturity, and self trust; and your easygoing personality draws you towards valuable meaningful friendships.
Good luck with this year of study, and keep writing and cooking, and loving each day for the journey it brings.

2:58 AM  
Blogger eurobrat said...


How I love late night cafe visits in the Annex :)

Are you returning to Ryerson?

6:14 PM  
Blogger Gillian Young said...

Thank you everyone!

You guys make me feel like a million bucks.

Sky- I do magazine, online and broadcast this year and decide for third year. It's hard to say which direction I'll take at this point!

Ayah- Don't worry, I'm not that ambitious.

Eurobrat- Back in class tomorrow! When are we going for drinks or dessert?

8:08 PM  
Blogger eurobrat said...

Absolutely as soon as possible- I'm so happy you are in Toronto!- however I'm blogging/writing from the tents throughout NY Fashion Week, so it will have to be in the second half of September...

(I'm taking a combination of night school and online courses to accomodate travel...)

Good luck with your new job.


5:24 PM  

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