Ice Hockey! Gustav Klimt! Drizzle!

25 January 2015 – Oh, so much drizzle. Zero-ish, very grey, and neither rain nor snow can quite win the precipitation battle, so they take turns. I’ve had a great visit with a friend up-town, I’ve decided to make the trip home my Saturday walk, so here I am in Oriole Park, about to chain my way south through various parks.

I’d like to tell you I’m all bright-eyed about it, but I’m not, I’m pretty well as sulky as everybody else stomping along, hood up, eyes forward.

Until I see the membranes of the dragonfly wing, silhouetted against the sky.

dragonfly fountain, Oriole Park playground

I like that, I do, & I find I am at least marginally less sulky. I walk around the dragonfly — a fountain, arched over the splash pad in the park’s kiddy playground — and imagine how cheerful it must be in summer.

dragonfly fountain, Oriole Park playground

“Summer will come, ” I think.

By the time I hit Ramsden Park, mid-town level, I’m willing to engage with what I see, willing to be pleased. Even by the russet tones of left-over vines, their texture piled on all the other textures along this lane.

fence on Ramsden Park Rd.

This park, just like Oriole Park, is practically empty. You can usually count on a universe of dog-walkers, but not today. Whatever the woofers might think, the humans clearly prefer to stay inside.

But not all humans!

ice rinks, Ramsden Park

Some people aren’t sulking & waiting for summer, I tell myself; some people want a long, cold winter. Not just these hockey players, either — behind this rink is the “civilian” rink, where I see parents helping wobbly-ankled children get the hang of their new skates.

I’m still zigzagging my way south-east. A jog a bit south of Ramsden Park takes me onto a street I’ve never before noticed, where I stop & stare at this little house. Once the neighbourhood norm, it is now dwarfed by the extent & scale of redevelopment.

house at McMurrich & Roden Pl.

I find I am … touched. Moved. How can I be moved by bricks & mortar? It is absurdly anthropomorphic of me, but I find this little place so sweet, so vulnerable. I want it to survive, and I am heartened to see a discreet corporate name just around the corner, suggesting that it is being cared for and will survive. For a while, anyway.

One more look, from the side-street.

view from Roden Place

My mind’s eye repopulates the street with back views like this — but my 2015 eye notes the tower and the construction crane in the background.

Another back view of a house — probably from roughly the same era, but farther south, and glimpsed from George Hislop Park. You immediately forget the house, and focus on the face.

She flames, as Klimt images always flame, she plays peek-a-boo with pedestrians over the park’s west-side fence.

Gustav Klimt image, seen from George Hislop Park

Any day that gives you both hockey and Gustav Klimt  is an OK day. Even in the drizzle.

So I am now reconciled to the weather and happy. I am almost immediately rewarded with a laugh — just a bit east of this park, on Isabella Street. This is the heart of the city’s gay life, now officially recognized with rainbow imagery on all the Church Wellesley Village street signs.

No street sign on this block, just a long line of bike locks. One of them bright pink.

on Isabella St., west of Church

Still in the village, now cutting through Barbara Hall Park at Church Street, with a detour to check the back of a garage on a south-side lane.

JAH mural in lane on south of Barbara Hall Park

I’m always happy to add another image by artist-architect JAH to my digital collection, so click-click. (And if you click-click here, you’ll visit my January 2014 post about his art, and his dissertation on graffiti in the digital age — which won him his Master of Architecture degree from U of Toronto.)

Into Allen Gardens, the last park before home, and I check the huge off-leash dog compound on the north side. It is usually teeming with dogs. Only two of them, this dull day.

Allen Gardens off-leash dog parks

Blue Dog. Green Dog. But no dog-dogs.

I lie. One is approaching as I walk away. He’s frisking along, but I can tell by the owner’s set face that this will be a short visit indeed.

 

 

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2 Comments

  1. Love, love that small little house! The dragon fly is pretty darn awesome too. One of the nice things about winter gray is that we notice things that tend to be competed out of our attention by the summer sights.

    Reply

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