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Wednesday, October 12, 2005

 

I smell ocean


looking north up the don, originally uploaded by trevorsc.

This is a shot of the Lever soap factory -- the one near the south end of the Don Valley. We live on the oter side of it, a short ways off. Usually, I don't think of it -- it's out of the way, tucked behind a flashy BMW building.

Sometimes, on temperate days in the spring and fall, there's a light humidity and a bit of a breeze off the lake. It's then that you smell a bit of Lake Ontario's freshness -- when the wind is a bit more Southerly than usual, and it's not so warm that the suspended solids in the air drifting across from U.S. industry make it here in strength. And drifting in on the air is a tinge of soapiness from the soap factory upwind, which, if you're willing to deceive yourself just a bit, feels almost like the freshness of ocean air. If I close my eyes I can (almost) pretend I'm in the harbour in St.John's.

It's one of my favorite illusions about my neighbourhood.

Perhaps that's one of the things that makes this place distinct. ...I've been struggling lately to think of things that make Toronto unique. So much of it looks like "Anywhere, North America." It's got some lovely stuff, but I rarely get taken in by beauty in this city. Sure, there are the ravines, but...

When I go into places, it's a different story. A friend of mine once said that Toronto is about interior spaces. Guess I've got a new photographic mission, just in time for winter.


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