June 08, 2015

Beach Therapy

Like water
which can clearly mirror the sky and the trees
only so long as its surface is undisturbed
the mind can only reflect
the true image of the self
when it is tranquil and wholly relaxed.
~ Indra Devi

The Beach, Toronto

For several years I lived in The Beach neighbourhood of Toronto and this is where I return whenever I visit the city. Last weekend the weather was perfect for a morning stroll through one of my favourite spots, Kew Gardens. I'd arrived a little late for the spring bulbs (the tulips were already shedding their petals) and too early for a good showing by the bedding plants. But the magnificent old trees in the park were in full leafy splendour.

Kew Gardens, Toronto

The Gardener's Cottage, Kew Gardens

Kew Gardens, Toronto

Kew Gardens, Toronto

Kew Gardens, Toronto

Alex Christie Bandstand, Kew Gardens

Down by the lake, Community Centre 55's Slobberfest had taken over Kew Beach.

Slobberfest 2015 at Kew Beach, Toronto

Slobberfest Pariticipants

I sat on a bench to watch the waves as they rolled gently on the sand, their rhythmic lapping like a calming mantra, and a lone seagull added his soulful voice to the music of the beach. A soft breeze tempered the heat of the sun and I felt very content. The boardwalk is truly my 'happy place'.

The Boardwalk in The Beach

Leuty Lifeguard Station

Meanwhile on bustling Queen Street, a colourful mural by Daniel Seagrave commemorates the Scarboro Beach Amusement Park and the neighbourhood's roots as a beach resort.

Scarboro Beach Amusement Park Mural, by Daniel Seagrave

Many of the neighbourhood landmarks remain unchanged, like the Leuty Lifeguard Station and local fire hall. Businesses, however, come and go.

Toronto Fire Station in The Beach

I'd planned to try a new eatery called Shakes and Franks, which specializes in milkshakes and unique variations on the humble hot dog. Doesn't the Hula (with bacon, pineapple salsa and lemon garlic mayo) sound tempting? But I'm trying to shed some winter pounds so I postponed that hot dog to my next visit.

Shakes & Franks

Everywhere I looked there were more temptations.

I enjoyed a glass of wine with an old friend at another new restaurant, the Brussels Bistro, where I dined on a delicious Carbonnade Flamande, or Flemish beef stew, while we reminisced about the good old days of our youth. We also promised to make travel plans together when we retire.

Brussels Bistro, Toronto

Carbonnade Flamande, Flemish Beef Stew

The beauty of nature + delicious food + many happy memories... by the end of my brief visit to The Beach, I did indeed feel tranquil and wholly relaxed. And very much like my self again.

Do you have a 'happy place' where you go to recharge?

Related Posts:
Toronto's Beach Getaway


  1. Beautiful photo! Is it warm there yet? I always think of Canada as cold even in the summertime:)

    1. The weather can vary a lot. Saturday was beautiful (around 25C) and Sunday it dropped to 10C.

  2. As many times as I have been to Toronto, I have never gone to Kew Gardens. It's been several years since I visited and might make for a nice week-end getaway.

    1. It's a nice escape from the crowds and traffic of downtown.


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