A sight to 'fall' for
06 March 2014
Coming from a tropical country, experiencing white Christmas is something I’ve wondered about. How really does “walking in a winter wander land” feels like? That question I was only able to answer when I got the chance to visit Toronto winter of 2014. I can still vividly remember how I made sure I left anything but my winter apparels. They were new, never been washed, and some even had their tags on them.
The excitement, apart from experiencing white Christmas comes from this one sight I have my eyes and heart set for – the Niagara Falls. I’ve seen several local falls but the way Niagara Falls, dubbed as the most powerful falls in North America, is described in magazines, books and articles makes me want to eject myself from my 19-hour flight from Manila to Canada to witness the landmark come alive. But as one of the highlights of my trip to Toronto, I had to save that best attraction for last.
Since we availed of a group transportation going to Niagara which is about an hour and a half drive from downtown Toronto, we needed to get up early and be at the meeting place at the designated hour. It was a Saturday 6AM with wind chill of -10 degrees. The snow carelessly descends and settles on the cold and frozen pavement outside. The bed sheets just won’t let you escape your bed. But I know I had to resist. And after an hour of waiting for the other passengers, and another hour and a half travelling from the city to Niagara, we arrived.
Because it was winter, the view from where the bus dropped us off was obstructed. Actually, there’s zero visibility. But the old but energetic lady who sat beside us in the bus shared that at summer, the magnificent falls is actually seen from that drop-off point. From where we were dropped off, we rode another smaller bus that took us down near the falls. And in 10 minutes…my jaw dropped.
What was once seen only from books or magazines now majestically sits before me, the stunning, larger-than-life, Niagara Falls. From where I stood, I could feel how the water rapidly runs from the top, and splendidly drops for more than 50 meters below. I stood there and did nothing but stare. I made sure I got a pretty good visual memory of how I see the falls, which is interestingly made up of three different falls. I didn’t mind that temperature at that time dropped to a -15 wind chill. I even stepped a couple more towards the balcony of the viewing area to make sure I get a better view of this gorgeous work of nature.
It’s surely one sight that I will miss as I head back home, and certainly one sight that I won’t mind seeing again. Spectacular, massive but unassuming – the Niagara Falls.