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Itzhak Perlman plays and the sun comes out

Bliss. This is bliss. All Toronto was out today – as all Vancouver was out a few days ago – celebrating the sunshine. Hot today, for here – 14 degrees, blasting non-stop sun. Spring is just beginning here – in the garden, three croci are out, the daffs are up but not out, a few tiny buds barely appearing on the trees, and still some patches of snow. But with this sun, it’ll be full on spring in no time.

What I saw right away, on my return: that Toronto’s roads are terrible, potholed and extremely bumpy; that my house is beautiful but too cluttered (who knew?); that my neighbourhood is amazingly quiet given its location. Mind you, that’s because there was an extra gift this weekend – the Don Valley Parkway is closed till Monday morning. The background hum from the DVP was missing all day today. So I went for a walk down on the Don Valley trail, beside the river.

 No, not Toronto – the last gorgeous view from Bruce’s balcony Saturday morning.

And now for something completely different – a path off of the Don Valley trail – not quite the beautiful woods on Gabriola or Vancouver, but in a few weeks, it’ll look quite different…

And … I saw this! Can you see those toothmarks? This, ten minutes from my front door, is a tree nearly felled by a beaver. I didn’t see the dam, but there must be one nearby.

The mighty muddy Don river. No, not the beauty of B. C., no question. But …

But then after this walk, I got on my bike and rode to Roy Thomson Hall to hear Itzhak Perlman play Schubert, Beethoven, Dvorak, and more, accompanied by his pianist. A 25 minute ride from my front door to hear the greatest violinist in the world, who was sublime, especially his encores, because he chatted with us, and this great musician is warm, funny, endearing. Much adored by the audience, thrilling. Oh, and dear Nick, who told me about this concert, was there too, plus friend and student Mona, whose son took her to the concert as an Xmas present.

And then rode home to potter in the garden, make dinner, and listen to Randy Bachman, who’s still on, so I am – you knew it – dancing around the kitchen.

And I thought – I love the trees, the tranquillity and mountains and ocean of a place like Gabriola. I don’t get nearly enough of that kind of profound nourishment. But I have to say, I love Itzhak Perlman more. That is, I’d rather visit beautiful places in the country and live in the city, than the reverse. That’s me – a citadine, as my friend Lynn says – a city woman who enjoys all the riches a city has to offer, knowing that the many negatives are the price we pay.

But now I also know, I need to make more time for the natural world. It’s not just a frill, it’s a necessity for this city dweller.

And now for Sunday night TV. One happy camper.

My dream dinner guests: Itzhak, Macca, and Obama. And Suzuki. And to shake things up, Emma Gonzales. Wouldn’t that be something?

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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

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