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Where My World Began

  • Date Submitted: 03/26/2010 09:59 PM
  • Flesch-Kincaid Score: 73.8 
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Where my world began (a memoir on my childhood)

The childhood I remember centers around Forest Hill. I like this area because I never had to go very far to feel I was in the countryside. Forest Hill is right in the center of the city of Toronto and yet it is surrounded by two major ravines, one to the west of the neighborhood and one to the east flanking Chaplin Crescent and Avenue Road. There are many walking nature trails in these urban forests and many shortcuts that I've come to know.
I grew up in a house just one block away from the junior and senior school I attended which has the same name as my neighborhood “Forest Hill Public School” also known as South Prep. This school is also surrounded by a large green space and a wonderful track for running and cycling.
I loved being able to go home for lunch everyday, especially in the winter when I would have a nice warm bowl of chicken broth or lentil soup, and a hearty beef stew with mashed potatoes, which are my favorite. I would try to guess what was for lunch from the aroma that surrounded my house since, at that time, my mother would have the kitchen exhaust on at full speed and perhaps a window open so as not to have cooking odors lingering. Most of the time I could guess at least one item correctly. Especially the fusilli, with the Bolognese meat sauce that my mother makes so well.
The proximity to the school made it easy to bring things back and forth from school as well. This was especially true in Grade five when I would be allowed to bring home for the weekend our class mascot; a little golden brown hamster we named JP. I knew it was a great responsibility, but nonetheless, I brought him home as often as I could. He is what really sparked my interest in animals and has led me to come to appreciate their habits, and respect their habitat. He was soft and meek, and I would stroke him very gently with one finger because he looked so fragile. It was like stroking a warm fur ball. Occasionally I...

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