I was in The Beaches this afternoon (I cannot, for the life of me, call it "The Beach") and checked out this year's winners of the Winter Stations Design Competition, "an annual public art competition that challenges designers worldwide to reimagine Toronto's lifeguard stations as a basis for winter art".
Though I had a throbbing migraine, I still managed to enjoy some public art, chat with strangers, and spend dedicated time lowering my breathing rate down to that of the waves. I also scored a delicious Murakami book from a community library stand, so all in all, it's been a wonderful day.
Though I was raised in a small town, I much prefer the fast-paced anonymity and autonomy I have in large cities. Being here in Yuzawa, Japan, is a serious change of pace, a tiny sliver of Tokyo, a sleepy town of 50,000. Because of this, I no longer have minor urban luxuries at my disposal and am at the mercy of my hosts in terms of pretty much everything… But after a really active visit in Tokyo, it’s kind of nice not worrying about train schedules, meal choices, navigation, and time management. Honestly, though my Instagram leads people to believe I’m still in a hub of activity, I’m not doing much of anything this week except swinishly eating my friends’ food, playing with their children, and following them on excursions to hot springs and noodle joints… I am just riding someone else’s river, and for once, that’s okay.
Look at me, giving up control. Maybe I still have that small-town kid in me, after all.
One of the frightening natural obstacle courses à la Ice Storm 2013. Stay safe and warm, Toronto.