metro mama

Monday, June 26, 2006

Toronto the Bad

I need to interrupt the Toronto the Good series with some venting on the negatives of city life. A few events in the past week are testing my idealistic view of Hogtown.

1) We were the lucky recipients of some gorgeous plants from my sister-in-law's wedding a few weeks ago. We proudly placed them on the front step. This morning, we woke to find two of them ripped up and scattered down the block. I was able to gather them up and re-pot them (most of them still had their roots)and I think they'll survive the trauma. But I am really upset by this. I hope this is a random act. There are some "characters" on the street but until now I was convinced they were benign. Now I'm not so sure.

2) On Saturday I sped Cakes by a drugged-out dude on Queen Street who was about to piss on the sidewalk.

3) I spotted a prostitute on the corner, at 4:00 in the afternoon, two blocks from our house.

4) We're pretty sure a guy across the street is dealing.

We really do love our neighborhood. We think our house was the deal of the century and we see changes happening so quickly. Yet these incidents have left me really upset and questioning if we have chosen the best environment for our babe.

I think we have. I can't think of a better alternative. We can't afford one of the frou frou neighbourhoods in T.O. Besides, we don't really want to live in one. We lived in High Park before this (renting, of course) and it was too homogenous (a post coming). I know we couldn't stomach the suburbs. A small town definitely isn't for us--I grew up in one and got in so much trouble when I was a teenager. Plus, Big Papa and I would hate it. The only viable alternative I can envision is a town like Peterborough--close to Toronto, yet big enough to have decent restaurants and a university. That's really not what we want either though.

So, I will have to continue building on my Toronto the Good series; sadly, not to convince my readers, but to remind myself.


Blogger crazymumma said...

Maybe it was racoons who ripped the plants. Is there a way to get a cop watch on the scag across the street who you think deals? Maybe a couple of well placed phone calls.. looked fine to me at the wedding....and yes, they CAN become even lower and flatter with a 2nd child. I just stayed overweight and kept the boobs.

Be nice about my hood...there is some good stuff over here, and I am funkifying it slowly....

Stay well....AC

12:39 PM  
Blogger metro mama said...

Sorry AC, didn't mean to be so harsh. I was in a pissy mood when I wrote it. There are a lot of good things about High Park (you included).

1:12 PM  
Blogger sunshine scribe said...

I SO get this. I spend alot of time defending my choice of Toronto to friends who have chosen otherwise. I even tried the burbs and grew up in the Peterborough area and I have to say the good outweighs the bad here. But unless you are in one of the fussy gentrified hoods you are gonna meet some characters. Keeps things interesting I say.

Oh and there are dealers and crime and all that crap in small towns too...

3:41 PM  
Blogger crazymumma said...

Oh honey don't sweat it. I remember you were in Bloor West (Blur West), and I Hate it out there. Our neck of the woods is a bit more fun, but I must admit some of the people around us DO need their sphincters loosened a bit. We are definetely the most out there couple in the hood.

Love to cakes....Anne

6:48 PM  
Blogger Mommy off the Record said...

Sorry to hear about what happened to your plants and the other problems you've been having in your neighborhood. I also live in a city and I've found that that stuff just comes with city living sometimes. We've had our share of "incidents" also. I guess the main thing is whether you feel safe overall.

I'm with you, though, I don't think I could take the suburbs!

8:02 PM  
Blogger Village Mama said...

From a burbie who wasn't too sure that she was ready to make the leap, I'm happy to be in the village. I love the city and I love everything that TO has to offer, but at the end of the day it's so amazing to sit in my backyard and watch my little man run around and really have somewhere to run. And I love, love, LOVE driving to the store and never having to worry about parking!!

I like the burbs far more than Peterborough - and we have FANTASTIC restaurants out here! We'll have to introduce you guys to some!

8:38 PM  
Blogger Her Bad Mother said...

MotherBumper and I met up in Dufferin Grove Park yesterday - a fabulous park - and were discussing city versus 'burbs. We were pretty clear that city wins out every time. Until we noticed that there was a pantiliner backing stuck to the bench between us. That gave us pause.

(And! West side has mucho funkiness! Roncie/Junction!)

10:37 PM  
Blogger kittenpie said...

I'm totally a city girl and frankly, she'll run into those things at some point anywhere, really. As someone said above, if you feel generally safe, it's good. And you may move into a different neighbourhood or it might clean up a bit more over time before you have to worry about her out on her own.

Heck, we live near to the lovely Danforth now and Misterpie tripped (well, nearly drove really) over a newly shot young man on Pape on Monday night a wee bit north of here. Things happen anywhere.

1:02 PM  

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