Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Sure As I'm Leaving, Sure As I'm Sad - I'll Keep This Wisdom In My Flesh

Every time I visit Toronto (which has been pretty regular since I came back to St. Catharines), I somehow always end up in both of the neighbourhoods I lived in while I was there.

I lived in Parkdale, and then the good ol' Gay Village for a year or so each.

So whenever I'm back, I relive a lot of memories. And both places hold very different ones for me.

Being in The Village quite literally makes my stomach hurt. I do my best to shake it off, but it always happens. I made a lot of great friends and do have a lot of wonderful memories there. But the bad ones seem to always take over and haunt me. It's brought me to tears more than once, just by being there.

It's pretty difficult to be in The Village without seeing my old apartment building, and that just makes things worse. There's a lot of pain associated with those streets and familiar places. Really vivid memories and feelings that will hopefully fade over time. Unfortunately, they're mixed with new ones and new information and new realizations. For all the love and happiness and good times, it was pain I felt when I left.

My chest is tightening, just thinking about it.

But then there's Parkdale. Oh, the west end.

Every time I'm walking up Queen West, or having a 50 with friends at The Rhino, I literally feel at home. It feels familiar and comfortable, and I tend to see a lot of familiar faces.

Parkdale reminds me of a new start, because it's the first Toronto neighbourhood I lived in. It's where I first visited C, first made all of my Toronto friends, and where I became somebody different. I built a new life there, with a new family and circle around me.

Parkdale had its hardships; many of them. Nothing was ever easy for us. But I feel so much better there. Hopeful.

I feel like me. A stronger me.

And that's why I always say that when I move back to Toronto (which, again, will hopefully be soon), I'm headed straight for the west end. People like to give me flack for it; they don't understand why.

But it's about being happy. 

And I want to be where I feel good. 

I honestly cannot wait to feel good again, for longer than a fleeting moment.


Anonymous said...

Are you and ever Gags going to give us all hope in a happy ending and get back together? Parkdale reunion couple? We'd love that :( I know it's a slim chance but we're routing for ya!

Anonymous said...

Kris - I take it St. Catharines is a town away from big ol' Toronto?

Anonymous - I didnt respond to you in the previous blog because I don't normally chat with nameless strangers ... something to do with not partaking in "confession" ... wishy washy you say? (come back to me when you put together some real words ...) Do you sit around playing with your tinky Tonka truck?

I dont either have to "hate" Kris or "love" Kris .... there is a happy medium here ... and I can't debate her feelings but I can sure debate her opinions ... this is an open blog, right? She ASKS for our opinions as we must accept hers ... so, enough from you "Mr. Anonymonymonymous" ... and referring to you as Mr. Anything reminds me of these :

Kris - you should actually do an entire column on Mr. Men and their influence on our lives

Gage said...

I've never understood the anonymous commenter... have the courage of your convictions, stand behind your words even if only in name!

Your attitude seems pretty good, I'm sure you're gonna make something happen pretty soon!

Kris said...

Anon - Oh how I wish you didn't post anonymously. Yikes. We care a great deal about each other, but frankly I've sworn off men for now. Heehee. And who is "we"? Oh my.

Saamael - There's about 20 different anonymous posters who comment here - that isn't the same one, I'm fairly sure about that. So this anon probably doesn't know what you're talking about.

And yeah. I dig Mr. Men. I have a "Little Miss Sunshine" shirt, odd as that sounds!

Gage - Yeah, I've thought about no longer allowing anonymous posts, but sometimes my anonymous posters are the best ones. I've learned to tell most of em apart. Especially the assholes in past posts.

Anonymous said...

"for now. Heehee." so that gives us hope for you guys. fingers crossed. Once you move back to Parkdale, I'm sure that will change!

Kris said...

What, do you have a bet going? Who are ya? Uncross your fingers. He'll be none too happy to see these comments.

Mike D. said...

Show what I know about Toronto because I don't think the difference between parkdale and a gay village.

Masuka said...

its the difference between drag queens and being dragged in to a back alley.

Kris said...

Boo. More crap has happened to me in the village than it ever did while I was Parkdalien.

Harald Benz said...

For a fresh start I highly recommend the Distillery District.


Kris said...

I DO like the Distillery. But I will most likely end up in the west end somewhere.

Aaron said...

Us west-enders would never consider the east. RAWR!

Kris said...

RAWR indeed.

See ya on the west side when you move back, Aar.

Aaron said...

I'll probably be 80 and lined up at the liquor store, sitting on my scooter. Do come and say hi.

Harald Benz said...

I wouldn't say the Distillery District is in the East. It's right downtown. 10 minutes walking distance from St. Lawrence Market.
It's also a very happening place. Lots of festivals, good beer, food, chocolate and of course with Balzac's one of the greatest coffee places in town.
Daisy would love it here too. There are so many dogs here to play with it's doggy paradise.

ken said...

We'll miss you when you go back

Kris said...

Harald - At one point, I was talking to someone about possibly living there. I guess ya never no, but probably not soon. I definitely like to visit there, though. Great area.

ken - Yeah, but you're coming to visit lots. You're teaching me to play guitar, 'member? You're one of my teachers.

Kris said...

(that should say "ya never KNOW." eek.)

Anonymous said...

Tourism Toronto’s website lists top attractions as including movie theatres, the Art Gallery of Mississauga and Bingemans Big Splash Waterpark in Kitchener-Waterloo.

Toronto, Ontario. Such a riveting city.

Kris said...

You're a strangely bitter person. Not one positive comment from you, ever. Why come here?

Krista said...

I felt the same when I went back to Kingston, not the SAME situation necessarily but the same feeling knowing I wasn't going to get the same things out of a place I called home. You just need more time to separate yourself from the bad ties and see the good ones that remain.

Anonymous said...

Kris - Bitter. Not always. Ok, here goes :

TORONTO is the most liberal civil rights laws in the world. Gays can marry, women are equal under the law and there’s no racism. It’s on a big, giant fresh-water lake while being close to Chicago, D-trizzy and NYC. It’s technically the most multicultural city on earth. No immediate fear of getting shot, you can smoke your Mary J and not fear a life in prison and there’s no draft. People from all over the world want to move here. Haven’t figured that one out – but must be somethin’ to it. Toronto has the biggest airport in the country with the most international flights. For someone like you ... Toronto is basically the only game in town – arts capital of Canada, media, sports, banking etc etc it’s all based here. If Canada’s going to have one world class city it’s going to be here. An hour north and you’re in the bush. With five million people in the GTA it's one of the top 10 biggest cities in North America.

That's positive, no?

Kris said...


Well done. :)

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