A LOVELY DAY IN TORONTO
Hungry Tiger Catches Goat
On 3rd November 2016, Eugene, Chris, Emiko and I drove around town in Toronto.
First we went to Bluffer’s Park to admire Lake Ontario. I told the group, "When I first saw the lake, I thought it was an ocean. On the other hand, a few years ago with Atilio in Scotland when I saw an ocean which came as a fjord into land, I thought it was a lake."
Eugene jumped onto a rock at the lakeside and posed a kungfu stance. Chris and Emiko were quick to take photos of Eugene in his "White Crane Flaps Wings" poise. Then Chris and Emiko also posed some kungfu poises for photo-taking. Chris posed "Hungry Tiger Catches Goat" from Southern Shaolin, and Emiko posed "Golden Axe Strikes Rock" from Xingyiquan.
I did not want to be left out, but did even more. I posed a pattern each from what I learned from each of my four sifus, as well as patterns from Taijiquan, Baguazhang and Xingyiquan.
Eugene then ran like a child for his lost toys. There were some colorful geese passing by, and small swans at the water edge. We joined Eugene in some photo taking galore.
We then walked to a marina nearby with boats anchored at piers. There was also a big decorative anchor before the marina. I remember seeing this decorative anchor some years ago.
"We're luckier than not only kungfu knights but also emperors in the past. Kungfu knights ate hard bread and drank plain water, but we have delicious food and drinks in restaurants. Emperors had to be carried in palanquins by able-bodied bearers, but we sit in comfortable cars which are not only faster but more enjoyable."
Talking about food, Emiko delighted me, "Sifu, we're going to enjoy the best ramen and the best ice-cream in Toronto. And the ice-cream shop is just next to the ramen shop."
Ramen, which literally means "pulling noodles", is a kind of Japanese noodle in appetizing soup. I recalled the delicious ramen in Japan when Emiko invited me there.
"Wonderful," I said. "We must not miss the ramen and ice-cream!"
We wasted no time to drive to the ramen and the ice-cream shops. The ramen was simply mouth-watering. As I just had breakfast, the ramen really filled my stomach. Luckily I knew "Plucking Stars", a chi kung exercise which, amongst other benefits, could readjust one's stomach capacity so that a practitioner could take in more food. So I did a few repetitions of "Plucking Stars" right on a street before I had some enticing ice-cream.
After enjoying the ice-cream, I had to tell Emiko. "Emiko, you are a trouble maker. Now I have trouble deciding whether the ice-cream in Toronto, Saint Petersburg, San Francisco, New York, or New Hampshire is better."
Later, Eugene told me, "It's a tie, Sifu."
We drove along a nearby neighborhood with rail tracks on the road. "It's yuppie town," I said. I recalled that a few years earlier I went through the same neighborhood with young and up-coming people living there.
Then we went to Toronto Tower, one of the top 20 tallest buildings in the world. There were also a lot of children there on a field trip. We also drove past Nathan Phillips Square with a public park and an ice skating rink. We also passed Queen's Park with some old buildings.
We drove through Chinatown. I was surprised that there were not many people there because many Chinese moved to the northern part of Toronto which became a new Chinatown.
Then we drove along Yonge Street. "If you drive along this street, you can reach the North Pole," Eugene jokingly said.
"There's too much snow at the North Pole for cars to travel on," I commented.
Emiko quickly checked Google in her mobile phone. "Yonge Street is the longest street in the world, and it is 1896 km long."
"It is almost the distance between New York and Miami Beach!" Eugene added. Chris, meanwhile, listened with amusement in the car.
Grandmaster Wong Kiew Kit,
3rd November 2016
Emiko and Chris