After a busy school year, I got to enjoy the livelihood, energy, and hustle bustle of Downtown Toronto in the form of annual summer trips. And somehow every year was topped by the next because each experience was bigger, grander, and better than before—a story that was embedded in my head and replaced annually. I felt like a kid in a candy shop every time I visited—ready to pounce at whatever enticing eye candy I saw next. And the best part of it all was the people that I could share it with, some of which I knew and some of which I didn’t. But what I did know was that each person had their own story—one that I was committed to piecing together through imaginary fragments and hypothetical scenarios.
Maybe that’s where my love for storytelling began.
The emo teenage girl with a beanie that covers her eyes is not just going “through a phase” but has finally found a style that makes her feel like herself. Deeply questioning herself and her identity for years have led her to stop caring about what others say and instead embrace her vibrant, rebellious, and carefree self.
The uptight man in the business suit with broad shoulders used to work in the military but when he had kids he decided to get a desk job. He hates his job more than anything but still endures it for the sake of his family, especially his young daughter who he is longing to meet more than anything after his long work day.
The dog that is panting like crazy cannot contain its happiness to be out and about with its owner. It’s been days, no weeks since he’s been out of the house because his human was busy. But now in the shining sun, it’s finally his time to shine—drool and all. Its bubbliness and energy is one that I could only wish to have.
Each story is populated by their own unique set of circumstances and surroundings. Each person has their own family and friends, beliefs and values, and ups and downs in life. And although we can never truly fathom what it would be like to be them, we can find solace in the fact that each and everyone one of us in this place is connected. Connected by the busy, labyrinth roads of Toronto and connected by my love for storytelling which I’ll revisit year after year by writing peoples stories while also completing my own.
Why I Wrote This Piece
I was inspired to write this piece to encapsulate the experience of my summer trips to Downtown Toronto. The busy crowd in Toronto has always made me think of how each person has their own story that I may never know about. That is why I often resorted to making imaginary stories about them to find answers about who these people were and where they came from.