Sadly, no one was able to answer the question I posed in my outing summery of the Parkdale outing for a free drink. The definition of a gladstone is a suite case with flexible sides on a ridged frame that opens flat into two compartments. Neither Pam nor Joanne won a free drink. Sorry guys. Joanne should, however, get brownie points for doing research on the history of the neighbourhood. Not only did she do the research, but brought a print out in a file folder.
According to Wikipedia Parkdale has a riches to rags story. Some of the most prominent families and what would be founders of Toronto lived here. However, the thing that’s causing so much headache and debate today was the neighbourhoods destruction in 1955. The Gardner Express. What we’re seeing now with condo’s happened then with block apartment buildings. Hundreds of homes were destroyed. And now the neighbourhood is no longer well to-do, but house working class families and new-comers to Canada. Although condos’s and new townhouses in this area are starting to be built up, it will take time for the area to become gentrified again.
We started a little too far east, but made our way west through side streets but found interesting alley ways that seemed to have the most interesting textures on fences, garages, garage doors and stone walls. I recommend to anyone to keep a folder of textures for any future Photoshop projects.
Something we’ve noticed was how neat and tidy these alleys were; not an inch of graffiti to be seen. There were however, dilapidated sheds that stuck out like a sore thumb among otherwise pristine properties. There was only one or two sad streets in need of the love and attention for someone to spruce up a house here and there. Parkdale is no longer what it was. It’s come a long way over the years. After I had a call from one of our clients who still believed Parkdale was still populated with druggies, I was even more interested in seeing the neighbourhood. I was quite delighted with it. Nestled in itself behind the train tracks divided from the hustle and bustle of Queen St.
We went into two vintage stores. One of which Pam was saying went downhill in the past three months. She said it use to be so organized. Now there were items in the isles. There was no rhyme or reason to anything. The second was full of stuff. Though I was disappointed with the lack of frilly dresses. Perhaps they were downstairs with the bolts of fabric I purposefully for another day when I had more time to look.
For lunch, Pam suggested as Tibetan restaurant. There was one that I ate at twice before called Tibetan House or something like that, but we say a cute little yellow place that served both Indian and Tibetan cuisine, so we decided to try that. We ordered four dishes to try between us. A veggie fried noodle dish, spicy pork, a beef soup, steamed beef dumplings, and our waiter gave us a free dish of rice to sooth the spicy food.
Every dish was quite different in taste and all very delicious. Our waiter was telling us the traditional meat was Yak. But since there is only one at the Toronto Zoo, and it would be expensive to import otherwise; what dishes would be yak are make with pork instead. I would defiantly eat there again. If you’re looking for something different, try Om Restaurant.
Although it was cold and blustery, and starting to rain, we decided to check out a lush community garden and another alley. One so different from the others we came from; it was an extension of Graffiti Alley, but further west at Roncesvalles. There were a few fantastic sections, my favorite, a wall painted in multiple shades of green with vines hanging over it. I’d call it the Hanging Garden, but the feeling was nothing like the movie. These graffiti artists are amazing!
On the way home there was much debate about going to Nuit Blanch that night. I don’t think anyone of us made it. We’ve endured the chill of the days wind, but I we shivered at the thought of how cold it would be that night.