X is for Xenial


You know, xenial, which means hospitable, especially to strangers and foreigners. Xenial, a word I have never said aloud nor written. Until now.

So here’s the thing. I love both big cities and small towns. I don’t discriminate. But some do. If you have lived or studied in Toronto, you may be hesitant to admit so if you move to eastern Canada. I was told, true story, to remove the fact that I had studied in Toronto from my resume when I first moved to Nova Scotia and then to Prince Edward Island. I don’t know if this is a David vs. Goliath thing but the sentiment did appear at times in my years residing there.

Recently having moved to a small town, an hour outside of Toronto, I have been reminded how friendly this part of the world is. Whenever we need a dose of the big city, we head to Toronto for some delicious ethnic food, hair dying (yes, my daughter did dye her hair a vibrant purple) and overall great wandering.

In doing so, we have found a chain restaurant in one of the Toronto suburbs with the name of Fat *astard Burrito. Not only do they make vegan/vegetarian burritos that are delicious and not a “rip-off”, but they have this staff that makes me want to be 20 again and work in the fast food business. They literally are that song, “Happy” come to life.

This is not unique in Toronto. Everywhere we go from drive thrus, to shopping malls, to markets, to the Gay Pride Parade to the parks, people are incredibly friendly. Toronto is one of the most multicultural cities in the world which I, of course, love. Riding the subway in Toronto, one could be anywhere in the world.

The list of things to do and see are endless and as a family, we have only hit a few so far. Our one top family favourite is to take the ferry to Toronto Island for the day. Whether you want to walk, explore, bike, swim, suntan, picnic, or go on a few rides, Toronto Island and its beaches are a “hit” for families who wish to spend time together without breaking the bank. And if you are like us, you may even meet a family who offers to feed you, just because.

Thanks for being so hospitable by dropping by today to see the Family C as they travel from A to Z.

What is a xenial place you have lived in or visited? Are you a big city or a small town kind of person?


  1. doreeweller · April 30, 2015

    Toronto sounds great. The only place I’ve been in Canada is Vancouver. Well, and to Niagra Falls.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lovetotrav · April 30, 2015

      Toronto is quite different from Vancouver. One of my favourite cities in Canada is Halifax and the east coast if you ever come up again.


  2. I love that you did this post on Toronto, as it is where I do most of my stomping. I was just eating at Fat BB’s last week. It’s one that opened in The Beaches about 6 mos. ago. Which one did you eat at? It was pretty yummy. I love that I can take my bike on the ferry to Toronto Island for the day. So much fun. And isn’t it startling to turn around and look back at the city? It looks like it is squatting on the water. Cheers.

    Liked by 1 person

    • lovetotrav · April 29, 2015

      We eat at the one in Ajax/Pickering. They have some major personalities there and we just love it. And yes… when you cross on the ferry the view back to the city is so amazing!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Sarah Ferguson · April 28, 2015

    I love Toronto! I would love to spend more time there.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. 4wallsnaroof · April 28, 2015

    What a wonderful place to live! We are not particularly know for having the friendliest, most easy going people here in New Jersey, but my husband and I were lucky enough to find a nice little town full of friendly neighbors. The former owners of our house were apparently the scourge of the street with visits from the police on a regular basis and a pool filled with black water that kept the board of health busy. Obviously, the house was a fixer-upper! Our new neighbors were so happy to have a sane family moving in that we received the best welcome ever!

    Liked by 1 person

    • lovetotrav · April 28, 2015

      So fantastic that you were well-received and that you have found a friendly neighborhood. It is important. We think everywhere in the States is friendly. Always have enjoyed our trips there.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Mom of 3 · April 28, 2015

    Almost done with the alphabet!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. A Journey With You · April 28, 2015

    You taught me a new word!

    Liked by 2 people

  7. joannesisco · April 28, 2015

    I live in Toronto. It’s been my home since I moved here after university. It’s so refreshing to read a story that doesn’t bash Toronto for *something* πŸ™‚
    I live in a neighbourhood where I am the visible minority … and I appreciate the xenial treatment I get πŸ˜‰

    Liked by 2 people

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