Toronto is an extremely diverse place, and in my four years living there, I resided in what’s generally believed to be a sketchy area. For three of those years, I was a five-minute walk from a rundown strip club, and a five-minute walk in the other direction to “Hooker Harvey’s,” the Harvey’s restaurant that came alive with prostitutes at night. Below are interesting Toronto citizens that I have encountered:
The “Believe” Guy
This man stands on the corner of Yonge and Dundas holding a bible. If you walk too close to him, he will suddenly burst out “BELIEVE in the Lord!” Toronto residents will usually avoid him, but I find it fun to steer unsuspecting friends and relatives from out of town toward him.
The Witch Lady of Dundas
This woman wears a long leather jacket and babuschka, and slowly pushes a walker down Dundas by Jarvis, which is near where I used to live. She’s notable because she looks exactly like a stereotypical representation of a fairy-tale witch. She can be heard mumbling to herself and if you make the mistake of thinking she’s homeless and try to give her money, or if you look at her for too long, she will start yelling gibberish in an angry manner.
It happened to me once, and I’m pretty sure she put a curse on me.
Miscellaneous Homeless People Who’ll Trick You Into Giving Them Money
I have nothing against homeless people, but what I don’t like is being tricked into giving them money. Several times I have had people open doors for me and when I go to thank them, they hold out their hands. The worst was when I was walking down the street and a nice-looking woman stopped me and told me I was pretty or something. Then she referred to me as “angel” and gave me a sticker. I was feeling pretty good about myself until she asked me for $5.
The Homeless Woman Who Tried To Hug Me
My friends and I were supposed to head out to a bar one night, and we somehow ended up getting separated while leaving their apartment. I was strong-armed by one friend and two girls I did not know to go to a party where I knew no one. I immediately lost them all at the party and decided to leave and meet up with the two friends we had lost. I found out where they were and decided to head out there alone. Now, that was a somewhat shady area, but I had never had any altercations.
Until that day. I passed a homeless woman who unexpectedly reached out and grabbed me. It was never scary and I don’t believe that she was trying to hurt me. She just grabbed me in an aggressive embrace and would not let go. I had no idea how to extricate myself — especially as she was surprisingly strong — but suddenly I heard someone calling my name from across the street. I heard someone approach, and this guardian angel untangled me from the homeless woman. It turned out to be an acquaintance from school, who then walked me to meet up with my friends. I rarely talked to him before or since that incident, but I have fond feelings for him.
One way that Stettler is superior to Toronto is that there is a dearth of creepy strangers trying to talk to me or touch me. And for that, I am grateful.