Photo cred - Elli G.
Everyone knows there's a lot of great things about Toronto. There's also plenty of not so great things. What we don't ever really think about is all of the things we take for granted, things that maybe seem shitty, but are awesome in comparison to other places. Moving away is a harsh lesson in counting your blessings
Yeah, Toronto can be a pain to get around sometimes (okay, a lot of the time), but it's one of the biggest cities you'll ever live in. That gives it a certain charm. Besides, living in a huge city means you can find anything you're looking for, whether it's a poster of that obscure band that only you and your friends have heard of, or a pizza slice with burger pattie bits on it.
Torontonians are really friendly, and living in other places, you'll quickly realize that's not a universal trait. You'll long for the days when the person sitting at the table next to yours at a restaurant would lean over and ask what you're eating. There's a lot of places where acknowledging the existence of strangers is just not a thing.
The cost of things costs
Rent is a nightmare, yes. But a lot of other things are actually much cheaper here than in other parts of the country. Food's obviously the most important one, and Toronto's really on top of providing affordable and healthy food to it's citizens. Good looking out.
Photo cred - Dylan Passmore
The TTC is the bane of my existence, just like it is for everyone else who has to use it on the regular. But if you ever leave Toronto, you're going to miss being able to use public transit as an excuse for being late to things. At least the subway gives us that.
You don't see him around all that often these days, but when you do, he's always a treat. Yeah, sometimes he can be a little creepy, but he's our very own Naked Cowboy, and you have to love that.
A hangover in Toronto is the same as a hangover anywhere else, but at least in Toronto you're surrounded by an endless supply of brunch places that'll bring you back to life with some greasy goodness.
You may not think about Honest Ed's much, but it's become such a Toronto staple, that living without it is going to suck. Where else will you go when you're looking for guitar-shaped key chains or holographic portraits of Jesus? Sadly, even if you don't leave town, Ed's is shutting down in two years, so we're all going to have to mourn it's loss soon.
The bike culture
Toronto is by no means the most bike-friendly city in the world, or even in Canada, but there's a decent amount of bike lanes set up here, and a strong community of cyclists working hard to make life easy for everyone on two wheels. Most other cities of our size really don't have that.
Photo cred - Dominic Bugatto
Yes, it's cold outside. And it's just gonna get colder for a long time. But Toronto's winter is actually a lot less bleak than most other places in the rest of Canada. Montreal's already moving towards below 0 highs, and it snowed for the first time in Edmonton at the beginning of October. Let's count ourselves lucky on this one.
The bar scene
Toronto has a lot of really great bars, and it doesn't really get a lot of credit for that outside of the city. Sure, last call is at 2:00, but we have a pretty great time before we get to that point. Respect where it's due.
The art scene
Toronto's got an impressive art scene, even though it's often overshadowed by Montreal. It's easy to forget just how much of a hub this city is for aspiring musicians and artists, and how much of a luxury that is when you compare it to a lot of other cities. Toronto's got some creative people in it.
Toronto isn't really known for it's pizza (everyone knows it's a burger city), but there's a lot of fantastic pizza places here, and they range from mom and pops, to major chains. Anyone who's ever been to Chicago knows that pizza is easy to get wrong, so if you end up in one of the many places that don't have the gift of the slice, you're in for a rough time.
Cabbing from one place to the other can be mighty expensive here. But most of our cab services are efficient and legit. When you're stuck outside in the cold waiting for a cab that's 20 minutes late, you'll remember Toronto.
Photo cred - Ruth Wilgress
The hair salons
There's approximately 4 billion salons in this city, and they deal with every hair type you can imagine. After living in a city where you can't find a decent salon that can handle your hair for a while, you really grow to appreciate what we have.
The food delivery
One of the best things that we have, without ever really paying attention to it, is a wide range of restaurants that deliver food all over the city at any time of day. This really comes in handy in the winter/when you're lazy. It's a luxury not every city gets.