Find the Quaint Atmosphere of Community
Lunchtime is the best time
By Enrique Olivo
Lunchtime is the best time. In a world where recess is no longer a reality, many high school students see their lunch period as the high point of the day. That is because out of the six and a half hours they spend in school, it is the only chance for them to relax, take a break from the exhausting labours of class, and share a meal with their friends (which, I would imagine, is not too different from the working world of adults).
Although it may not always be consciously acknowledged, this daily act of sharing a meal is actually essential to the formation of a sense of community in schools. Indeed, from the benches of cafeterias to the tables of local restaurants, the laughter and cheer that take place over the breaking of bread can do wonders for the soul. And with that said, I share the reason for this short exposition on the wonders of food: my classmates and I are so blessed to be in a neighbourhood that has so many places for us to come together and enjoy the myriad flavours that Toronto has to offer.
Indeed, all along the Upper Beaches of Kingston Road, an area three high schools call home (Notre Dame, Malvern Collegiate, and my own school, Neil McNeil), you can find almost anything that will both please your appetite and offer you the quaint atmosphere of community that seems to be found only in local businesses.
“There’s the usual stuff you can find anywhere like a Subway and a Pizza Pizza,” remarks grade twelve Neil McNeil student, Tamim Chowdhury, with a smile. “But the real beauty is in the local stuff. Down the road there’s a poutine shack, a burger joint, a Thai restaurant, a Hot Dog place, a café that sells shawarma… there’s just so much. It’s beautiful.”
Beautiful is a good way to put it. And it may just be me that thinks so, but in this society that seems to be growing more individualistic, more dependent on technology, and less geared towards personal interaction and the human side of things, it is very comforting to know there are still local places in the community where people can get together and simply enjoy each other’s company over a meal. The simple things really do count for a lot.