High Park Sunday Morning

Posted on June 26, 2011


I found myself hiking through the trails of High Park early this morning, looking for a special spot.  I chose the park for my client, Jackie, who wanted an on-location portrait for her daughter, Caitlin.  I’ve always wished the High Park is right on my backyard.  Sprawling 400 acres in the heart of Downtown Toronto, it’s virtually your fastest and easiest way to get a big dose of nature.  Each time I come in this park, there always something that catches my attention.  What is a first for this visit is that I am here on a summer day.  I usually visit when the Cherry Blossoms color the park pink or during the fall season when it gives me a palette of oranges and reds. Today I learned it’s equally soothing on a summer’s day.

I strolled towards Grenadier Pond,  towards my favorite willow tree.  What I most enjoy is to be underneath its shade and watching the halo of lights define the curtain of branches gently swaying above me.  Today, it seemed to be a popular spot for people doing recreational fishing and a gaggle of geese waddling around.  So I walked on towards another pathway that leads to a series of benches.  Sunshine poring through green branches, with shades of red, orange and deep purple.  Somehow, this scene transports me back to when I visited the Burchart Gardens in BC.  I stopped there and smiled.  I found my spot!

I look at my watch and I am still more than half an hour from meeting Jackie and Caitlin.  As I was taking off my backpack to assemble my camera to do some test shots, I stop as I notice a squirrel doing the most unusual thing.  It runs straight at me and stops.  It sits on its hinds and its tail started wagging begging for attention.  Then I realize that I actually have no morsel of food with me.  For a foodie, this seems so wrong.  The squirrel seems to figure out that I have nothing to dole out and it abandons me for someone else.

Test shots done, I still have a lot of minutes to spare, I walk to the restaurant at the middle of the park, Grenadier Cafe.  Since I normally forget to eat when I am shooting, I had a big breakfast before leaving home.  Made me regret that I was still full when I walked in as they seem to have a good breakfast menu.  I asked for coffee and took a table at the patio.  I really wish High Park is just right on my backyard.  I could see myself having morning strolls and sitting in their patio for a good breakfast. I think I’ll come back here again with my sister and her kids in tow.  I have to try something from the breakfast menu.

My clients arrive and I have to break away from my daydream.  I guess there would be a second High Park post soon ;)

Posted in: Food for Thought