I’m about to embark on another European adventure.
I’m well aware of the fact that I’ll likely return with a sense of nostalgia for the lifestyle I experience in Europe and I wouldn’t be alone in feeling this way.
In case you’re on the same boat, this week’s post is dedicated to figuring out how to live a European life in Toronto.
As always, if you have any suggestions or comments feel free to leave them in the comments section below.
Picnic in Parks
Europe: the land where people leverage every opportunity to lie on the grass.
Toronto could learn a thing or two about enjoying public spaces. With exciting new parks being built in this city, it’s the perfect time to learn from Europe.
Grab your friends, make some sandwiches, potentially fill up a flask (we are not endorsing public drinking – that is still illegal here in Ontario), and take a blanket. Sit on the grass, watch the day fly by and enjoy the present moment. Your mind and soul will thank you for it!
Ride a bike
I am a huge promoter of biking safely around Toronto. To be frank, we don’t have a very bike-safe city but with a helmet, a solid plan (that includes biking in safe spaces – like trails/ by the water on Lakeshore, or in parks), you could potentially avoid accidents.
Hopefully our city will become more bike-friendly in the coming years – here’s hoping!
Leave work behind
It’s now illegal in France to check your emails after work hours. Once you’re done work, you’re done! I worked in France for a brief period of time and learned the hard way that when people are on vacation, they’re actually off work. Here in Toronto, often times, you’ll find that even when on vacation, certain people in certain positions will still check and respond to emails. I can’t stress enough how unhealthy that is. It’s mentally draining. I recommend leaving work behind at all costs. Your mental health is worth so much more!
This is an art that is so under appreciated here. It’s not creepy to watch people go about their day-to-day activities in Europe. Why does it need to be labelled as such here? Sit on a bench, on the patio and look up from your phone. There’s a dog chasing a squirrel, a man just dropped his ice cream on the ground and a couple is walking hand-in-hand truly enjoying being in love on a beautiful summer day. You’re missing all the action! Please note, people watching is highly enjoyable with an espresso in hand if it’s early morning but after 12 pm, you’re good to enjoy a Rose or a glass of Chardonnay while doing it!
Visit a market
Farmer’s markets, flea markets and summer markets are what summer is all about! Last year, Toronto was fortunate enough to have the Union Summer Market to enjoy. This year, however, due to construction at Union Station, that market is not happening. One market you must enjoy though is the one on Bloor street! You’ll find all you need there plus some luxurious stores to marvel at as you munch on your street food finds!
Go for a walk
Walking…what a subtle way to clear your mind and end the day. Get off the subway a few stops before your usual stop. Look at the architecture of the city or like me, fret about the many ‘proposed development’ signs around the city. Walk by China Town, Kensington Market or discover a whole new neighbourhood. Walking will take away your stress, give you that healthy glow and make you feel refreshed at the end of a long, hot day.
Hope this list helps you get through your vacation blues. I’m really hoping it’ll help me get through mine!
As always, feel free to comment away with additional suggestions.
Live from Toronto, this has been A Berlin Vibe.