Wednesday, September 19

447 metres? Not so high

We've survived our first day of inclement weather in Canada. Fortunately most of our scheduled sight-seeing today involved mainly indoor activity. The rain subsequently cleared this evening just in time to provide a spectacular sunset.  From our hotel window we were able to watch its dying rays light up the shores of Lake Ontario.

We started the day with a taxi ride through Downtown to the Royal Ontario Museum (known locally as ROM). As we entered the building we were greeted by the extraordinary sight of a 30 metre long "brontosaurus" type dinosaur skeleton towering overhead. This display was promoting a new dinosaur exhibit at the ROM with dozens of impressive skeletons on display.  I've never seen anything quite like it and I know my parents surely haven't.

Once we'd had our fill of Jurassic encounters it was off to visit the CN Tower. At 553 metres this was once the world's tallest free-standing structure. However, its height has since be surpassed by at least three more recent structures in Asia and the Middle East. Despite its relegation from the record books my father was particularly keen to see it.

While on our way to to the tower, I arranged for our cab driver to take us on a brief circuit of Downtown. As he weaved his way through traffic I furiously pointed out landmark buildings and locations including the graceful, curving towers of City Hall.  This proved the perfect compromise to a walking tour I'd previously recommended before light rain began falling as we left the ROM. 

The CN Tower delighted my father. The view from the Skypod observation deck 447 metres above the street is rather breath-taking and the glass floor section is an unnerving battle of mind over matter. Like millions before us we were mesmerised by the experience of looking down on commuter airplanes coming in to land at the nearby Toronto Islands airport.

We then finished our day enjoying an evening performance of Cirque de Solei under its temporary, custom-built big top tent. This was a first for my parents. They loved every minute of the colourful spectacle. This is live entertainment at its best as a cavalcade of elaborate costumes, sights and sounds dazzled our senses for almost two hours.

• Posted from my iPhone

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