At The Beach(es)

Dear Readers, if you were to get on a 501 streetcar on and head east, you would, after about 30 minutes on a good day, end up on the shores of Lake Ontario in a district called The Beach (or The Beaches depending on how old you are and what social pretensions you have). You might almost think you were at the seaside, except that there isn’t that briney twang in the air. There are certainly lots of gulls and a few terns, and many, many dogs, including this enormous harlequin Great Dane.

The air is full of the cries of red-winged blackbirds, which always makes me sad these days, because it reminds me of time spent with my beloved departed aunties.

But there is something about a brisk walk that always lifts the spirits, and of course there’s always something to see, like this Olympic swimming pool which is being renovated, and which has sparrows nesting in the defunct lights.

The side of the swimming pool, in new brutalist concrete

The sparrows’ nest in the light fixture

There are some small species tulips in one of the dune areas, which are currently being protected to enable milkweed and other plants for butterflies to grow. The tulips aren’t native but they are rather pretty.

I always forget that Lake Ontario is still a transport hub, so I was surprised at the size of this ship on the horizon. And how delighted I was to find this website, which shows which ships are currently on the Lake and where they’re going. I believe that the ship below could be the Robert S.Pierson, which is a self-discharging bulk carrier. So now you know.

And I think that this has to be the most enigmatic lifeguard station I’ve ever seen. It looks like a short story just waiting to happen.

And finally we’re back on the long and varied main drag of The Beach(es) and it’s time for a coffee. We get into The Remarkable Bean just before the cycling club, whose members are mainly older than I am and definitely put me to shame. I can recommend the lemon and blueberry scone if you’re passing.

And finally, as we head back to the street car, we pass a small park with a magnolia tree that is whiter than the whitest snow, a real showstopper. The photos don’t do it justice, but you get the idea.

And finally, here are some Crown Imperials. In the UK, it’s a plant that is sometimes now pollinated by blue tits, who have taken to drinking the nectar. I wonder if the chickadees in Canada will get the same idea?

3 thoughts on “At The Beach(es)

  1. Alittlebitoutoffocus

    My wife uses an app which tells her what all the ships are in a particular location. She loves to use it when we’re on holiday and there are big boats in or near the harbour. If you’re interested(?) I could ask her what it’s called.


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