Well, it's officially back to school time, and I know that not by the chorus of screaming kids, decked out in their new sneakers and backpacks, or by the gaggle of uniformed-teenage girls at the bus stop, or even by my own academic calendar (I think I start class next week...). I know it is back-to-school because the Canadian National Exhibition (lovingly referred to as the "CNE" or "The Ex") is officially over. (Sob!)
I am one of those lunatics that love the Ex. LOVE. In a can't-get-enough-of-it way. I only went twice this year, but I should just literally bite the bullet and get a job there one of these years, just so I can go everyday.
It's hard to describe what I love so much about it (but I'll try). The sights (the ice dancing show - phenomenal; the people watching - even more so. I saw Elvis for crying out loud. No, not an Elvis impersonator, just a guy who really, really looked like him - meaty sideburns and all.) The sounds (screaming on the crappy Haunted House ride, on the classic Polar Express, and the squeals of joy every time I rammed my car into others on the bumper cars). The smells (this year there was this AMAZING booth, - Candles by Lori - of candles that were shaped like desserts - creme brulee, banana splits, etc. and actually smelled exactly like them. I sounded like one of those crazy kids from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory - the original of course - "The snozzberries taste like SNOZZBERRIES!" No, I didn't try to eat the candle. But I thought about it.) The tastes - hello? Corndogs and Tiny Tom donuts (cinnamon-flavour). Please and thank you.
And, of course, the shopping! Urban Behaviour, Sirens, Bluenotes, and of course, the mammoth warehouse free-for-all that is Stitches - oh, Ex, you know how to tempt a girl. Tops for $2.98? I'll take 10. Jeans for $10? Throw 'em on the pile. Year after year you can't beat the clothing deals here.
So, you can see why I'm sad - I'll have to wait a whole year for the wondrous world of the Ex to descend upon Toronto again.