I could swear in the olden days there was snow in Toronto. I keenly remember walking in snow to the subway. I remember our balcony covered in snow. I remember wearing winter clothes. But something like global warming has made this city into a brown and green city and has taken white out of the Hogtown colouring book.
I remember the squirrel (we called it Skippy) that would come to our apartment balcony eight floors up, hanging precariously in the railing that had a few inches of snow piled on it. One snowy day I opened the sliding door to get a better look at out squirrel and he (she?) decided to come inside for a look around. We spent the morning hanging out with our friend, feeding it left over pizza crust and Lays Ripple Chips. Then Skippy went to the door and said it’s time and we let it out.
It was on a snowy day, the first week of December, when a powerful feeling came across me as I sat on a streetcar heading home from work. Go west. Vamoose. So I got home, called my boss at the publishing company, said I was leaving. Then I walked down the street to a Travel Cuts and bought a one-way ticket to Calgary leaving in just three days. I told her this was it. She could have my place and she didn’t have to pay me key money. I gave away most of my stuff.
Her did not want to see me off. Her parting words were, “you can run but you can’t hide. Loser in Ontario equals loser in Alberta. Best part is we are getting rid of one of our losers. Now some poor stupid tit in Alberta will need to take over my job of reminding you daily of your incompetence. So long loser.”
She really knew how to turn me on, and it was a great way to end it on a high note. I was feeling incredibly great and utterly useless at the same time. My two favourite feelings mashed together like butter and bread. She went to the bathroom, locked the door without a word and I took the keys off my key ring and walked out the door. And I swear there was snow.