A little trip to Toronto

I just returned from a trip to Toronto to visit my elderly mother during the coldest month in the city’s history. (Cue the “There’s snow in Toronto” jokes.) While there, I indulged in the simple city pleasures of riding the subway, visiting the ROM and the AGO, eating out, watching the news, and observing the inhabitants. (I also visited some family members,… Read more →

Foreign exchange

Unlike most banks abroad, most American banks in smaller centers don’t keep foreign currency on hand. You can’t just waltz up and buy a couple hundred euros, pounds, Canadian dollars or Mexican pesos. (Personally, I think this is just wrong, but I am one mere mortal among minions.) If you need foreign currency prior to departure for adventures abroad, you need… Read more →

Group of people standing in a forested area, in front of an old mining installation.

Hiking and outdoor recreation

Compared to other places I’ve lived, the Birmingham metro area is a bit…. light on hiking and recreation trails. And they aren’t linked. (Gee, you’d think that there wasn’t much regional cooperation – or something.) Now, just to assure you that I’m not whining without context, here’s where I’ve lived, with the accessible trail systems: Toronto, Ontario – and the Toronto… Read more →