Christmas In the City

Our usual Friday adventure met with a challenge last week – A Generational Storm, to be exact. But we were not sidelined because…we live in the city!

We had bought very expensive tickets to a Christmas concert at Roy Thomson Hall, featuring a well-known Canadian musical group – The Tenors. We figured we would go downtown to enjoy the Christmas lights, have dinner, and then go to the concert. Then I would write to you with the beautiful Christmassy details. I worked hard beforehand to finish wrapping gifts, cooking the squash, and tidying the house in preparation for our family Christmas dinner. By Friday morning we were ready.

Then Peter and I started watching the weather forecasts. A storm for the ages: rain morphing into ice and then becoming snow up to 20 centimeters, wind gusts of 100 kms per hour, blizzard conditions. Even Mayor Tory was cautioning us: “Don’t go outside unless you have to!” We began worrying about surviving extreme cold and frostbite, about driving down snowy roads, about slipping on the ice. But mostly dear readers, I was worried about you. “What will I write about in my blog post if we don’t go?”

Well we are troupers in our 70’s and we now live in the city. There had to be a way. We found a solution with the shortest drive, the least amount of outside walking, and the fewest hills.

Next we focused on getting dressed. Forget the fancy clothes – go for warmth. We donned thermal underwear, heavy socks, warm boots, scarves and gloves. Oops – where were Peter’s gloves? We searched everywhere for any kind of gloves, even work gloves, but came up empty, all except for a sad pair of Dollarama expandable gloves, one-size-fits-all, that barely came up to Peter’s wrists. He said they would be OK as long as I promised not to take any photos.

Then we made the very short drive in our car with snow tires, a full gas tank, and a long snow brush, to the closest subway stop. There was a brief moment when we stressed over the Green P parking meter that would not take our credit card. But we got over that hurdle fast. Then we walked about 50 meters on salted sidewalks to the subway station, and rode to the St. Andrews stop with an underground passageway directly to Roy Thomson Hall.

After a quick dinner at a nearby restaurant, we sat down to enjoy an evening of The Tenors singing their hearts out. They did classic Christmas carols, cute Santa songs, a couple of Italian pieces so Peter could dance around in his seat, powerful numbers that tugged at our heartstrings, and one song where audience members were invited to join in by turning on their phone lights. The effect was magic. It was so wonderful that we hardly noticed we were sweating buckets in our thermal undies.

As we made our way home again on the subway, we marveled at how we could do so much, even during a generational storm, because we live in the city – a city that has made accommodations for bad weather, and doesn’t even give out parking tickets during a blizzard.


The Tenors

Phones light up Roy Thomson hall


4 thoughts on “Christmas In the City

  1. Sounds like a great concert and worth the effort to get there. I was worried that it would be cancelled as I was reading your blog. Fortunately the staff and performers lived nearby. I think one of the best things about writing a blog is that it forces you to find something interesting to do every week. Your readers just live vicariously.


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