Riding the Rocket

by - April 12, 2010

On Saturday we left the comforts of small town Ontario for the chaos and shuffle of the city.  When you're used to living in a place with only one traffic light venturing into a metropolis is an experience in itself.  At 8 years old, Zander is already jaded to the bustle - annoyed that we had to wait for a train and then a bus when we had a perfectly good car in the mall parking lot.  Liam, however, embraced the adventure like any three-year-old boy - with enthusiasm and fearless joy.  It was for him that we abandoned our car in the covered (free) parking lot at the Yorkdale Mall in exchange for a ride on the subway.

Liam approaches new experiences with a kind of wide eyed wonder that I wish I could capture and bottle up for those moments I feel ready to scream at him in frustration.

Before entering the station we made a potty stop.  I took Liam into the stall with me.  This was no Hanover Zellers, no way was I going to let him wait outside the door.  Watching me squeal as the automatic flusher went off three times while I peed made him forget to protest such a request.  And the sinks.  Have you seen the sinks at the Yorkdale Mall?  They're incredible.  "Like on a spaceship," according to Liam.  They glow with some ethereal blue light - like washing your hands over an extraterrestrial crystal or something.  Gorgeous!  We leave the bathroom and Zander's leaning against a pillar, water stains on his jeans from where he'd dried his hands.  "Dander, weren't doz sinks tool?"  And he just shrugs and goes, "Yeah," and I get this horrible flash of motorcycles and tattoos.  Not yet, I remind myself.

For ten bucks we bought an all day family pass for the TTC.  That's cheap entertainment, if you ask me.

We travelled through what felt like mazes of underground streets and tunnels and magic stairs (escalators in Liam speak).  Liam danced to the saxophone player in a blue plaid suit and asked if he could make money if he played his harmomnica.

We heard the subway train before we could see it.  The thunder rumbled up through our sensible walk-around-the-city shoes. ("No, Zander, you can't wear your heelies.")  The wind it generated as it blew past us swept our hair into our eyes and made Liam squeal with excitement.

We boarded.  The car was almost empty.  We sat underneath a sign for the next big bestseller.  Zander wanted to stand because he'd seen people do that in a movie once.  I wanted to attack him with kisses and embarrass the cool right out of him but I let him have his moment.  He loved his moment.

Liam rocked with the car, asking questions about everything, wanting so badly to pull the yellow emergency chord, weaving back and forth in a rhythm beating it's way towards motion sickness.

I'm sure we were entertainment for the veterans of the rocket, checking out these hick town tourists getting excited about what to them is a necessary annoyance.

And Zander did loosen up.  When we got off our first car (we took 5 during the day) he tried to run beside it as it took off again.  A girl watched him out the window - distracted from her book long enough to smile at the innocence of a child amazed by a train.

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  1. I LOVE THIS!!!! And the capitals mean I am yelling that at you.... YOU ARE A TALENT MY DEAR FRIEND! I got shivers and you painted the perfect picture....He totawwee wanted to pull that cord.

  2. Alanna Blogs!! And it is good. Very good.

    I can't believe fame hasn't found you...yet.

    I'm excited to join your bloggy fan club ;)


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