More goodbyes

In the past year, goodbyes have been in abundance.  There were the goodbyes at the prison, the goodbyes at my birthday/ leaving party, goodbyes to sibling and then parents at the airport, goodbye again to Dad when he visited, to various people that I have met along the way and now another job.

Today, almost a year after last leaving the world of addictions, I have left again.  Time for a summer of seeing a bit more of Eastern Canada and living the beach life.  I didnt get to do as much as I intended last summer as ankle gate threw a bit of a spanner in the works.   

I havent really had much time to stop at work over the past week or so, and today ended up feeling a bit rushed as there was lots to do with goodbyes to clients as well as friends and colleagues. 

I had a great last day client wise with lots of people doing well, a few favourites turning up and a good atmosphere in the group. I feel like I have forgotten something though….!  

It was sad to say goodbye to friends in the office.  We laugh a lot.  Whatever goes on job wise and otherwise in life, there is always laughter and giggling.  Sharing dating dramas and comparing matches on various dating apps, listening to the Pentatonix very loudly at Christmas, hearing constant power ballads from one cubicle (yes, you made it to the blog), singing, Canadian/ English translating, storytime at the meeting table and countless trips to Tims for chilli followed almost every time by declarations of love for the Tims staff who know all of our orders without us having to ask.  I really do hope that I can stay in touch and be friends with some of them in life after the office. 

They got me a delicious goodbye cake, spectacular in fact.  Moist, fluffy, no jam, good icing to sponge ratio a what more could you want in a cake? It even said my name on it!  And who doesnt love a card with lots of nice things written by everyone in the building.

I hope I have made the right decision.  This could turn out to be the decision that ends my residency application before it begins if I dont manage to get a further four months employment in addictions before May 2017.  It could also be my last chance to have a summer of fun in Canada if I dont get residency.  It is a chance I had to take.

Summer to do list…. 

Sunbathe, Newfoundland, Montreal, Nova Scotia, PEI. 


CN Tower Climb

Todays Canadian activity was to climb the stairs of the CN Tower  The stairs are only available to climb twice a year for charity – this climb was for WWF animal charity.  It runs on Saturday and Sunday with 5,000 places each day.    There are 144 flights of stairs, 1,776 stairs in total.  And yes, it is more stairs than the Eiffel Tower.

As I dont like the stair climbing machine at the gym, the best approach seemed to be not to train to for the event.  I have been busy with two jobs lately and have actually spent the run up to the event about significantly more sedentary than usual with only a couple of token visits to the gym.  I signed up with one of the guys that works at my gym and he made me meet him at the street car stop at 6am.  6. AM.  I turned out to be glad of this as when we were finished and leaving, the crowds and queues had significantly increased.  

We made our way down to the CN Tower and picked up a timing card, dropped off our bags and headed for the bottom of the stairs.  The climb was ‘hands free’ meaning no carrying any items – phone, ipod, children, water or any other items. It said medication and ID were allowed to be taken in a ‘fanny pack’.  Yes, I am sniggering childishly at this.

My strategy was to walk the first half at a steady pace, then alternate walking a flight, running a flight.  At 3 flights, I excitedly exclaimed to the girl beside me that it didnt seem too bad and it had flown by.  At 9 flights, I was at a low point.  This was going to be harder than I thought.  By about 20 or 30, I was okay and powering through.  I tried a few flights two stairs at a time, but when I stopped and went back to one at a time it made my legs a bit jelly like for a flight, so I resumed my steady pace through to the end.  Someone said at 60 flights, we were nearly there.  This was far from accurate and I did not appreciate it.  72 flights… halfway!   From 100, the last 44 flew by and I had a good pace, overtaking people that had peaked earlier.  I didnt run any of the flights, but was happy with my steady approach, having learned the value of pacing myself through running. 

The stairs themselves were grey and provided no external views.  They were two people wide with a small landing that would hold about 3 or 4 people at the top of each flight.  There were paramedics around every 10 floors.  The escape hatches looked a bit of a drama, so luckily I made it.  I completed it in 22 minutes and 50 seconds.   The fatest time on record is 7 mins 50 and it said the average climber takes 30 mins, so I am really pleased with my time.  

 At the top, we could finally have water and step outside to cool down in the fresh air admiring the city views.  We collected our souvenir tshirts and I got a bag with a bear on it (very excited by my bag!) and headed on with our days with a sense of achievement. 


Room mates

A few weeks ago I acquired some new room mates in the form of a couple of French guys.  The change has had its ups and downs – it has been nice to come in and the apartment is a bit warmer, this is partly as new heating has been installed and also because there are other people to put it on and generally make the place warmer to come home to.  On the flip side, I have lost the space that I had.  The boys are so quiet, I barely hear them when they are home and am constantly having a bit of a fright when I encounter them silently moving around.  One speaks little English, so conversation is fairly limited, but they are nice enough.  They are new to Toronto on the same visa as me, and the apartment is perfect for them given that my Landlady speaks French.

Seeing Nathalie move out in January and visiting her new place, followed by having the apartment to myself for a couple of months got me thinking more and more about wanting my own space.  I want somewhere that I can furnish how I would choose, with pictures on the walls, cushions, plants and just generally make it my own.  It is hard as my apartment is fantastic – warm and homely with a fantastically huge bath tub, it just isnt mine.  I went to see an apartment that would be perfect, but was available immediately and I need to give two months notice (and cant afford to move until June anyway).  If I want to live in Toronto permanently, I dont see myself renting a room long term, so with a year to go, it seems a good time to branch out on my own (well, with Mavis) and see if I can make it work renting my own bachelor apartment as close to where I am as I can get.  So, two months notice given and one week later, there is nothing suitable available for June, but I am hopeful something will turn up!  In the meantime, I have started stockpiling a few essentials every time I visit the Dollarstore to be ready for the move.  Nervous, excited, anxious, impatient, eager, the list goes on!

The next couple of months are going to be full of big changes with jobs and apartments, but hopefully it will all come together for a fun summer.  Ha.  It snowed again this week.  I like the snow, but come on, really? It is April and I am ready to get tanning.