Author | Photo Haley Cullingham

My First Summer Out of the Woods and Back In the City: A Wishlist

I have spent the last four summers living like a hippie in the wilds of British Columbia. While everyone back home was tweeting  about summer fun, life for me was simple. I slept in a tent, wore weird thrift store outfits and cooked up masses of Shepherd’s Pie and Pizza for burly treeplanters.

It was a great way to get out of the city, clear my head and escape the acting world for a little bit. Going to audition after audition and losing parts in mascara commercials to 14 year olds can make anyone a little crazy. But I am such a city slicker, and a few weeks into each wild summer I would find myself dreaming of my urban homeland. Fast forward to this year: I will officially be staying in the 416 for the warmest months of the year. And having never experienced a Toronto summer, I have a pretty hefty wishlist.

From what I hear, there are magical spots where you can drink outside called “patios.” I don’t have much more to say other than YES. And on those patios, I can finally wear all the great vintage dresses I’ve been hoarding that my husband has referred to as “colonial-ish,” “weirdly Medieval” and “sort of Amish, but too short.”  Look out, fashionistas of

When I’m not on a patio, I intend to make my own fancy little ice cubes, and I’ve even started brewing my own fermented tea (Kombucha). This should give me something suitably douchey to talk about on patios. You can just call me Martha.

Finally, I’m at my cockiest when giving (extremely bad) directions to visiting families or couples. Forget the fact that I barely know basic intersections, when someone asks me how to get somewhere, I am elated. Like in a weird way, as if someone recognizing me as a city native makes me Carrie Bradshaw. I’m hoping this happens a lot this summer to boost my self worth in between callbacks for experimental “profit-sharing” performance art shows.

Quick tip, if a lone German backpacker asks you to take a picture with him in front of a yellow school bus…just say no. Trust me.

HELLO SUMMER. My mother gave me an amazing wicker picnic basket that I’ve been using as a filing cabinet for the last 36 months. Time to uncrumple those old paystubs and fill that thing with snacks, am I right? If I’m missing anything please let me know, I’m off to buy 8 pairs of sunglasses.

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