Friday, 22 April 2016

Toronto skyline and a progressive cow barn

Here are a couple more sketches from my sojourn in Toronto en route to Cuba.  The Toronto skyline is distinctive, drawn here from the man-made Leslie Street spit.  The spit is a popular birding spot, with many bays made of construction rubble, and woodlands growing on the older parts.  Local birders were excited by the arrival of spring.  Spring is a relative thing - it was a sunny day, but with a strong cold wind, and I was glad for the shelter of a rock berm that I shared with two trumpeter swans and a flock of kinglets.
The Gray grist mill and Donalda cattle barn is a beautiful historical building dating from the 1830's.  After nearly a century grinding flour, powered by the Don River, it was converted to a cattle barn on a "model dairy farm" owned by the Dunlop family.  They had progressive ideas - the cows had steam heat, fresh air ventilation, and "soft radio music" (according to the historical plaque at the site).  I'm envisioning cows dancing the Charleston.  The building is shingled, except for the silo, which is covered in glazed ceramic tiles.  It looks like it should be good for another couple hundred years.

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