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But wait, there's more.

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Doug vs. Japanese Snack Foods: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

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diaryland: sirilyan.diaryland.com: entry for 2003-01-17 (12:21)
In which our plucky young hero liked the coal bugs.

For me, the best part of being in a new place is watching the puzzle pieces come together in my mind.

When I visited Toronto for my apartment hunt last September, I met up with a few people from a message board I frequent. I was given detailed instructions on how to get to a cafe on Broadview Avenue (which I promptly bungled by getting off the streetcar too early). It was a fun time, and the entire area was shiny and clear and vibrant and full of color.

Last night, I noticed that Spirited Away was playing at a semi-independent movie house on the Danforth, so I hopped the subway there. "Hm," I thought, as I walked to the theater. "This place looks vaguely familiar."

Afterward, with a slice of warm pizza in hand, I realized: this was where I visited in September. But now, instead of being at the far end of a streetcar line and the middle of nowhere and God if I get lost I might actually just call a taxi, I don't care, I need to get back, it's just ... the Danforth. Hop the subway, I'm back home, or take the streetcar to Dundas station. My map of the city isn't perfect, but it's still a much better map than any I ever had of anyplace else I've lived.

So. The Danforth is not quite as shiny as that first time. The edges aren't as magically sharp as they were. But there's a word for a place that's a little matte, a little soft around the edges.

Home.

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