Archives for posts with tag: ferry

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Remember, when I told you about taking the ferry from Holland to England? I described how lovely the experience of slow travel was, gently floating in the North Sea from one port to another in the company of good Ferry-people.

I also proposed that any meaningful travel must involve some sort of immersive change in material reality — in between the places. Between the Hook of Holland and Harwich, the change in material reality involved entering the world of expansive ocean, pointed waves extending toward the grey, then blue, the orange hued skies. On a plane, the change in material reality brings the bright blue sky and puffy blanket of atmosphere and clouds.

Well it happened again — a change in material reality, that is — and it happened on the very short ferry trip from the Toronto’s Jack Layton Ferry Terminal to Ward’s Island.

IMG_1856Plunged into the abyss of the misty fog, aboard the Ongiara

As we pushed away from the city, the always powerful bulk of the skyline immediately disappeared behind the wet, grey fog. We were completely plunged into the world of mist and ice, as the ferry slowly trudged its way across the frozen Toronto Bay.

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That a change in material reality was experienced on the very short 15 minute ferry ride between Toronto and its Islands is testament to the profoundly different places these two fundamentally linked places are.

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Today, your Urban Geographer was featured in a photograph on the front page of the Globe & Mail’s Toronto section!

Above, Kevin Van Paasen captured me in deep contemplative thought as the ferry crossed Toronto Bay. The photo reveals my simultaneous vibing on the city’s complexity as it slowly reveals itself, along with the mesmerizing bobbing of pieces of ice as the ferry cut its way through the frigid waters.

The article gets into depth about the beauty of winter-time on the Toronto Islands, something I certainly have been experiencing these few days. Some Islanders lament that fact that not enough Torontonians come to the Islands to experience the joys of winter (including wild-skating, or “skating the wild ice”, as it’s referred to in the article). I’m more inclined to leave the winter-Island the way it is now — isolated and perfectly quiet.

Now that positive temperatures have brought on a deep melt of the ice, reading the article makes me feel nostalgic. Here’s hoping for more ice and snow this winter.

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Traveling a far distance always comes with some sort of immersive change in your material reality.

Out of an airplane window, you are privy to the novel world of clouds. On a train, the scenery passing quickly gives way to a blurred reality.

I recently traveled by ferry across the North Sea from the Hook of Holland to Harwich, England. Viewed from out of the windows of the ferry and from its deck, my material reality transformed into the water world.

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Might I recommend to opt for this dreamy form of transportation to anyone traveling between the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, rather than an enticingly cheap EasyJet flight. Being immersed in the world of the North Sea for seven hours is incredibly meditative. Pushing slowly away from the Dutch coast, we drifted gently toward Britain.

It should also be mentioned that generally, people who take the ferry are not in a rush.

Immersed in a water reality, and in the good company of Ferry-People while floating along the expansive North Sea toward England had me relaxed and curious — a good position from which to enjoy the geography of the world.

(It should also be mentioned that the Ferry was staffed by Filipinos who did not have a Visa for England or the Netherlands. They were stuck — perpetually on the boat, for periods of up to 6 months — after which they returned to the Philippines. A poignant situation to consider the state of borders, visas, and immigration today.)