We did Couchsurfing at this sketchy girl's place. The whole experience is hard to forget. The picture that describes it all the best would be this. No comments needed!
This blog is by an Estonian discovering her childhood dream country Canada. Based in Toronto, but sometimes traveling. Looking for an Estonian connection in the far away country and giving away tips about what to see, what to do, what to experience. Hence the name of the blog: Toronto. Canada. Estonia.
Sunday, January 29, 2012
I think they say when you have been to Montreal, but haven't been up at Mount Royal then you have seen nothing. It is basically a huge hill in the city of Montreal, immediately west of downtown Montreal, Quebec, Canada, the city to which it gave its name. The hill is part of the Monteregian Hills situated between the Laurentians and the Appalachians. The hill consists of three peaks: Colline de la Croix, Colline d'Outremont and Westmount Summit. It takes some time to get up there, but it is worth, especially four avid tourists like we were.
So long Montreal!
Saturday, January 28, 2012
The Olympic Stadium (French: Stade Olympique de Montréal) is a multi-purpose stadium in the Hochelaga-Maisonneuve district of Montreal, Quebec, Canada built as the main venue for the 1976 Summer Olympics. The stadium is nicknamed "The Big O", a reference to both its name and to the doughnut-shape of the permanent component of the stadium's roof; "The Big Owe" name has also been used to reference the astronomical cost of the stadium and the 1976 Olympics as a whole.
The stadium is the largest by seating capacity in Canada. After the Olympics, it became the home of Montreal's professional baseball and Canadian football teams. Since 2004, when the Montreal Expos relocated to Washington, D.C., the stadium has no main tenant, and with a history of financial and structural problems, is largely seen as a white elephant. It currently serves as a 65,255 seat multipurpose facility for special events (e.g. concerts, trade shows), and continues to serve as a venue for playoff and Grey Cup games hosted by the Montreal Alouettes. The Montreal Impact also use the stadium on occasion when a larger capacity venue is needed or when the weather restricts outdoor play in the spring months.
The tower incorporated into the base of the stadium, called the Montreal Tower, is the tallest inclined tower in the world at 175 metres (574 ft). The architect was Roger Taillibert.
Read more about the stadium HERE.
There is not much to say about this industrial robot-looking design "Le Phare du Cosmos" (1967), which author is Yves Trudeau. It was created for Expo 67 and is located in St. Helen's Island in Parc Jean-Drapeau, Montréal, Quebec. It is massive, bold and safe. I would call it a landmark...by the way, not far from it was another, similar red monument....
which has a very complicated name and goes like that: Porte de l'amitié ou La Puerta de la amistad
This sculpture is made by Sebastián in 1993. It was a gift from Mexico for the 350th anniversary of Montreal's founding. Sebastián, one of Mexico's most prolific sculptors, created this “friendship gate” to represent exchange, passage, and opening. Sculpture erected on the Parterre of Île Sainte-Hélène.
One of the high-lights of the visit to Montreal was to finally see famous Habitat 67, which is renowned model community and housing complex in Montreal. It was designed by Israeli–Canadian architect Moshe Safdie. It was originally conceived as his master's thesis in architecture at McGill University and then built as a pavilion for Expo 67, the World's Fair held from April to October 1967. It is located at 2600 Avenue Pierre-Dupuy on the Marc-Drouin Quay next to the Saint Lawrence River. Habitat 67 is widely considered an architectural landmark and one of the most recognizable and significant buildings in both Montreal and Canada.Due to mass visit of tourists the property has been covered with many signs stating that this is a private area, no walking in and no taking photos. Security people are really there and working. If there is a conflict in your behavior they let you know about your faults through speakers. Pretty spooky!
More about Habitat 67 HERE.
One of the things to see in Montreal is definitely Montreal Biosphere. Is is a museum dedicated to the environment. It is located at Parc Jean-Drapeau, on Saint Helen's Island in the former pavilion of the United States for the 1967 World Fair Expo 67. The dome had the outer covering as well, but that burned on May 20th, 1976, during structural repairs. Now they just use the frame around the museum to present the former landmark.
More about the Biosphere HERE.
First thing of course we are walking around in the old and some new town. Architecture is interesting, offering, well...new and old. The city has many little cozy bars and artsy little stores - something fro everybody.
We experienced some troubles with our host from Couchsurfing, as their dog ate all things from my bag, even things which are not edible, she tore apart and made a big mess. I was the one to blame of course, as it was my bag. Gee, I didn't know anything of a dog and was noted like that. I have had dogs and they haven't pulled such act...hmmm.
Friday, January 27, 2012
We went to see with friends Riho and Kaili performing in one of the music department halls of University of Toronto. Kaili was playing flute and performing some of her brother's composed music. They are both wonderful and creative people. Kaili was also one of the participants at "Am I Estonian?" project. Riho has been to Estonia a lot and planning to go there for some time soon.
Check Riho's website HERE.
Thursday, January 26, 2012
I am sorry, this picture is slightly out of focus, but I couldn't resist posting it. It shows the beauty of the breakfast under a natural light so nicely. I am not a big cereal eater, but I was introduced in last year's camp to Fruit Loops, which I absolutely adore. I can't think of eating them for a long time, but once in a while cereal with fresh fruits and almond milk tastes just so good. Judge yourself ;)
Sunday, January 22, 2012
If you know what are these, then you are smart. If not, then you will find out in a moment.
Bike infrastructure, everywhere
If you've ever locked a bike to one of Toronto's ring-and-post stands, thank Jack Layton. Layton, working with designer David Dennis, popularized the ring and post fixture, the first of which was installed in 1985. Layton always claimed the initial design happened on a bar napkin (something Dennis denied) but that wasn't the only way Layton made the city bike-friendly. He fought to get bikes allowed on the TTC, and created the city's first cycling committee—working outside of council at the beginning, until the city officially recognized their work.
Tuesday, January 17, 2012
Sunday, January 15, 2012
Tõnu is another person who I took photos of for the Am I Estonian project. I like this shot a lot because of a very strong pose, interesting lighting and how the Estonian national costume's belt is presented.
Friday, January 13, 2012
I do not think I have mention that this winter has been very warm and without snow. This morning a surprise finally happened and I had a slight shock, as I had to cycle that morning. Other than that it was nice to see some real snow and white ground in East York!
I had no idea that something so average as manna in Estonian means cream of wheat in English, which is such a beautiful name. I used to have this type of porridge when I crew up, but I think I kind of grew out of it. I was reunited with cream of wheat (a new word for me!) in Canada. Today I had that as my breakfast....mmm...
Thursday, January 12, 2012
Girls just wanna have fun, right?
This is Ülle, who is running the Estonian House Cafe. She is known to have an amazing variety of gowns for many different events. She always trying to look the best while managing her business and appearing in many of her own catered events. One day she had purchased a new dress and was trying this on, so I just had to be at the right place to snap this photo!
Friday, January 6, 2012
Monday, January 2, 2012
Later after the shoot Peeter and his family asked me to stay over for the dinner, as they had another Estonian visiting them. This was Sandra, a rising actress from Tallinn. It was great to meet her. Apparently she had been for years good friends with Peeter's older daughter whom she came to visit. Her grandmother has been hosting her many times while she has been in Toronto.We had a great chat while enjoying Peeter's wife's amazing food.
I was offered a nice family shoot by my friend Peeter. He needed photos of his family and since he appreciated my work a lot, then he honored me to do that. It was fun and I gained another great experience!