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January 07, 2008

Richard Florida

My (New) Hometown

« Global Players | Main | Generica »

A visitor to Toronto writes:

"The most significant impression I had of Toronto is that its people are so civilized."

More here.  Nobody yells. People don't argue or haggle. Nobody blows their horns.  You rarely see police.


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Great article. It's nice to hear an outside perspective on Toronto, as I have lived here all my life and therefore all of these wonderful qualities have become "my norm".

My favourite part of our city is it's diversity. I grew up with people from many countries in my classes. They became my friends. I never knew that I "wasn't supposed to like them" or "be frightened" of them. And now as an adult I prize the diversity of Toronto above all it's other great qualities. It's given me a view of the world right here in my backyard.

Not only do we prove (for the most part) that different people/ethnicities can get along, we also get to try out each others' foods and customs -- which is so easy, particularly in the summer with so many street festivals in the different ethnic enclaves around town. You can get authentically made food from almost any part of the world. The joy that lights up a vendor's face as you eat, and enjoy, his/her wares is priceless. In my experience they love to share what is precious to them; secret recipies brought from home, a local dish from their village. In this way we show our openess and willingness to try new things and learn something new about other cultures.

And don't get me started on the party that is this city when World Cup Soccer is on. Yes, there's lots of trash talking but no violence. The hardest part is keeping up with where the party will be that evening. Korea vs. Italy -- Korea town and Little Italy will be hopping. Greece vs. Brazil -- the Danforth and College street will be alive. And all are invited to join in the fun, no matter what country you are from or what you look like.

I love Toronto. I'm lucky to be living here.

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