There wasn’t really a plan to it. I just grabbed my camera and went for a walk with Jazz.
Our goal was the CN Tower. Getting there was a meandering journey through father-daughterhood. I love my little girl so much, but she’s not really so little anymore.
I look back on old photographs of her and feel a sadness. It’s the sort of feeling I get from seeing photos of loved ones who’ve long since passed. Little girl Jazzy is long gone. She’s been replaced by the beginnings of a beautiful young woman.
From Dundas West Station we rode the subway to Bay, then set off for daylight. Toronto looks very different when you emerge from the underground. It’s a completely different city. You start off in one place, and in a blink you’re somewhere else. It’s like getting off an elevator. It’s like seeing Jazzy infrequently for short bursts, every three or four months. It’s a brand new sight.
At Urbana Coffee she asked for something cold, so I bought an iced latte. We sat in silence across the table from each other. It was a comfortable silence. She had her book and iPhone and she was noodling on facebook. I happened to be browsing myself when I caught a news update, “Jasmine Rusnak wrote: ‘I have the best dad in the world!!!’”
We walked through Queens Park and down University Avenue. Caught sight of a particular place I’d been to a few times and my mind suddenly drifted towards someone ‘special’ (and I mean that in every sense of the word). I really wanted Jazz to meet her this trip, but things didn’t work out that way. Suddenly a voice broke my revelry. “Daaaaad, I’m hungry.” Brought a smile to my face.
A short while later, I found myself holding a pint to my lips whilst munching on calamari. Jazz bought me lunch as a thank you for the iPhone. It then occurred to me that as a result of this pact, Jazz in essence purchased alcohol for the very first time in her life – and she bought it for me.
The CN tower was our next stop, and Jazz loved it. She was so excited. She kept hugging me and talking non-stop. We explored the heights and watched the sun set from 447 metres above the ground.
We spent the whole day talking to each other. Really talking. We swapped philosophical insights. We laughed. We talked about family. We talked about sad things. We talked about boys (well, I talked and she nodded politely). She acknowledged her understanding of the situation by uttering the command, “Dance monkey!” a reference to where she wishes to be in any relationship with a boy.
It really was one of the greatest days we ever spent together. This whole Toronto trip has been amazing. I miss her so much, sometimes I have to simply NOT think about her. Three precious days left. I want to keep the conversation going and stop time. Freeze it like a photograph. Can’t though. Time keeps marching. All I can do is make new memories.