6 Things People In Toronto Take For Granted From Someone Who Moved Away
You'll miss the 6ix when you're gone.
In my six years in Toronto, I fell in love with the city's incredible culture, free things to do, delicious food scene, and endless activities, from checking out the Toronto Islands to exploring a new neighbourhood.
That's not to say I didn't have my complaints like most locals, though.
If you live in Toronto, you probably rant about the housing crisis and affordability issues that have you paying $18 for every cocktail in the west end and $2,000 and up for a one-bedroom apartment, but it could be worse.
I love Toronto like any proud Torontonian, and after moving away, I now look back at my time there with the warm glow of nostalgia.
Here are the six things I'll miss that you shouldn't take for granted.
Toronto isn't crawling with cockroaches
Toronto may have raccoons, bedbugs, and some rats, but compared to other massive cities, it's barely got a pest control problem.
Cockroaches are ridiculously common in other cities to the point where it's normal to spot a handful crawling on the streets on a 20-minute walk home.
I don't know about you, but the only time I spotted cockroaches in Toronto was when I was working in a restaurant, and those guys were itty-bitty compared to the monstrosities you can see in other cities.
So please enjoy your odd raccoon sighting and subway rat – it could be a cockroach the size of a large man smushed under your new shoes.
Rental prices really aren't that bad
Rent in Toronto is rough, but compared to cities like New York and Vancouver, it still feels like Monopoly money.
It's no surprise that people are unhappy with the prices, but compared to other major cities, Torontonians are living large.
In New York, the average rent for a one-bedroom is USD $4,195, according to Renthop, which converts to $5,636.19 CAD.
Across Canada, in West Vancouver, the average rent for a one-bedroom apartment goes for $2,844, per month.
So while I agree rent prices have gotten out of control, it could be worse — and I'm talking thousands more dollars a month worse.
So please enjoy your rent prices while you can, because chances are you have no idea how affordable it actually is compared to other major cities.
Toronto takes pride in its city
Torontonians love their city.
Toronto is one of the most diverse cities in the world, and the pride its citizens take in that is unreal. I don't think I've ever seen a group of people who rep their city harder.
We all love to complain about the construction on Eglinton and the strange amount of dog poop on the sidewalks, but at the end of the day, it's all worth it.
People in Toronto all have their own story with the city, whether they immigrated years ago or have freshly moved from a small town in Alberta.
Once people live in Toronto, they always speak of it with a fondness that is seldom found elsewhere, and I think that speaks to the magic of the city.
So enjoy your city pride and wear it well.
Healthcare is free
If you've only ever lived in Canada, you may be shocked to find that in other countries, you actually have to pay for your healthcare, and it doesn't come cheap.
Enjoy your free hospital visits, family doctors, and surgeries while you can because not everywhere in the world offers it for free.
The winters are actually kind of nice???
This is going to be controversial as Toronto's winters may be miserable at the moment, but they truly are unique to the region.
I spent many winters in Toronto with a crazy carpet in Trinity Bellwoods, throwing my body down a steep hill at full force and walking home with a bruised butt and a big smile on my face.
Winter in Toronto may be brutally cold, but it is truly beautiful.
So before you moan and groan over the slush-covered streets, remember one day, you may live in a city where a snow day isn't always on the horizon.
Toronto restaurants are unmatched
Toronto is a haven for incredible food and cuisine from around the world.
In the six years I lived in the city, I found my favourite restaurants for Thai,Vietnamese, Italian, Japanese, Greek, Korean and dozens of other cuisines that have rivalled the food I've tasted at other restaurants around the world.
When you live in Toronto, you have such a diverse array of authentic cuisine right at your fingertips, and depending on where you move, you may not have that same luxury.
So if you live in Toronto, do me a favour and dine out tonight and try a dish you've never had before.
Toronto truly is one of a kind, so enjoy it while you can and soak up all it has to offer!