Do you have a couple of Loonies?
Toronto Travel Blog› entry 1 of 12 › view all entries
Do you have a couple of Loonies? These were the first words spoken to me on my first morning in Canada. It turns out a Loonie is Canadian slang for a dollar coin and this guy wanted some change for the vending machine but more about Loonies later.
Arrived at Toronto Pearson airport about 5:30pm local time last night, took the bus “downtown” and arrived at the hostel without much difficulty. Went for a wander for an hour or so to get my bearings, had a beer in the bar around the corner and went to bed. With a 5 hour time difference and a long day of travelling I planned on forcing myself to keep awake so I could get a good nights sleep and correct my body clock. However, this idea went to pot and I found myself staring at the ceiling most of the night almost too tired to get any shut-eye.
So up at 6am, shower and having chatted to my fellow guest about Loonies, I ventured out to get some breakfast. Found everything closed so walked around for a couple of hours before stumbling on a cafe and had a ham omelette.
9am and I am first in the queue for the CN Tower. Standing 553 metres tall it is (for the moment) the tallest tower in the world and offers fantastic views of Toronto. The real size of it hit me when I came down and was looking at the huge sky-scrapers in the city thinking that they looked like a child's playset when viewed from the top of the tower.
Next stop was the (Ice) Hockey Hall of Fame. Not that interested in the game myself but was passing and thought I would give it a go.
They also have the Lucky Loonie on display there too. In 2002 the USA hosted the winter Olympics at Salt Lake City and a Canadian team was hired to produce the ice for the hockey games. Unbeknown to the Americans a Loonie was secreted in the centre of the ice and so inspired Canada to gold medals in the men's and women's ice hockey competitions ��" hence the term lucky Loonie.
I decided to go back to the hostel in the afternoon with the intention of chilling out and writing my blog with a few cans of beer.
Found an LCBO a few streets away and left clutching my shameful purchase of 4 cans of (overpriced) beer in a brown paper bag and left hurriedly non wanting to catch they eye of any disapproving Torontonians. Back at the hostel an American guest was seriously disturbing his Canadian, Australian and European fellow travellers by sharing his views on gun control and recounting his exploits as a marksman - killing squirrels with a shotgun does not seem fair surely?!.
Bar crawl tonight but have to be up early for the IndyCar race in the morning.