Friday, August 10, 2018

All Your Questions About Toronto; UNANSWERED!

Megan and I decided to take our summer vacation in Toronto, Ontario, Canada this year since neither of us has been there since the early-mid 1990s.  Little did we know, that we'd be back home in less that 24 hours...

We dropped off our bags and went for a late lunch at Fancy Franks ( around the corner on College Street.  And they were amazing.  We both got the "Franks Got Seoul" with Korean Beef Rib, Kimchi, Sesame Seeds, and Scallions.  I haven't had a hot dog this good since I lived in Chicago

The Fairland Funland ( is an artist/musician project we were planning to attend while in Toronto.  It was just down the street from our place in Kensington Market.  

Eco-friendly car?

I barely recognize Toronto from my last visit around 1993.  There were new skyscrapers everywhere.  And it makes sense since the population is now more than Chicago and the 4th largest city in North America.  

The CN Tower ( is one of the few structures I did recognize from before.  But, it looks much smaller next to all the new high rises around it.

The base of the CN Tower from the Rogers Center.  There's parks, event spaces, Ripley's Aquarium ( and all kinds of things here now.  So different from the large parking lots, railroad tracks, and abandoned industrial buildings I remember surrounding the stadium.

Here's a few people doing the Edge Walk ( on the CN Tower.  

The Toronto Blue Jays (51W-60L) ( vs. the Boston Red Sox (79W-34L) ( at the Rogers Centre (formerly SkyDome).

We haven't been to an MLB game since Chicago.  While the Blue Jays aren't very good, at least the game was competitive.  Went into extra innings before the Red Sox overpowered the Jays.

We were completely unaware of what was happening.  While the game was happening, the roof of the stadium was being closed.  Which is odd since rules for baseball usually require that lights, domes, and other conditions have to be the same for both teams.  And, I've never seen a retractable roof changed during a game ever.  But, it was impressive to see this feat of engineering at work.  

Why the roof was closed was because a major rainstorm was about to hit Toronto.  It rained heavily for hours.  It rained so hard that the dome leaked into sections of the seats.  And it was a slow moving storm that we were stranded in the stadium hotel for a long time because taxis and mass transit were all down.  

Here's a photo from the Toronto Star (  Megan and I were blissfully unaware of the situation still.  We knew it was raining hard, but we were annoyed because we left the rain gear at our place since there was no rain predicted earlier.  But, when we arrived at our rental, it too was flooded.  Fortunately, the building manager lived next door and we were able to stay in a guest room for the night.  But, that also meant it was the end of our vacation.

At Aroma Coffee ( on College Street pondering the rain.  Deciding "should we stay or should we go." 

Well, we're still technically on vacation.  So, Megan and I went to Deer Run Beach Park ( for some sun and water.

Aww...  Those dragonflies are in love...

I have to admit, we do make good lemonade when life gives us lemons...

Please listen to my Graphic Ear interview on WAYO 104.3 FM Rochester at:

Michael Kraus was born on the industrial shoreline of Muskegon, Michigan. After earning his Fine Arts Degree from The School of the Art Institute of Chicago, he attended Grand Valley State University for his graduate degree. From there, he gained varied experiences from the Chicago Architecture Foundation, Art Institute of Chicago, Hauenstein Center For Presidential Studies, Lollypop Farm Humane Society, and the Children's Memorial Foundation. And every place he worked, he had his sketchbook with him and found ways to be actively creative. In 2014, Kraus became a full-time artist by establishing Mike Kraus Art. Since then, he has sold hundreds of paintings that are displayed in nearly every state and dozens of countries. Currently, Kraus lives in Rochester, New York with his beautiful wife and goofy dog.

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