Thursday, April 29, 2010

First day in Toronto

Our first full day in Toronto, april 22th (not counting our arrival day), started very early picking the 6:15 AM free shuttle to the Toronto Metro Convention Center. Once there, we registered for the Meeting and started to plan our day. Tons of simultaneous expositions in the severals rooms and halls of this huge two-building Convention Center kept us busy most part of the day. Trust me, it was the biggest meeting I ever assisted. There was an special area for the Medical students, residents and associates were we reported ourselves for the Doctor's Dilemma contest, taking place in the evening. So, during our free time by noon we decided to visit the impressive CN Tower, right by the Convention Center. A high-speed elevator lift you 342 meters (two floors per second) to the observation deck, giving you an amazing view of the city and surrounding areas, like the Toronto Island for example. I even saw some common birds from there: Canada Geese, Double-crested Cormorants and the abundant Ring-billed Gulls were all identificable from that height. Then, we passed by the world-famous Glass Floor, from where we could see the Convention Center entrance and the gigantic Roger Stadium. We couldn't resist to have a picture over the Glass Floor, a temptation that comes out cultures since all the present tourists did exactly the same. The ride down was a terrific experience, and then we bought some gifts at the gift store at the base of the tower. On route to the Convention Center I saw a group of irridiscents Common Grackles feeding close to us and a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker by the ornamental trees, another addition to my growing Life List (the grackles, not the sapsucker... I have seen it in Panama). Curious fact: I saw the sapsucker very close to the pole by the Convention Center which have a giant Sapsucker and a Pileated Woodpecker on it! In any case, those where the only birds I saw during my first day in Toronto since we spent most part of the day at the Convention Center. In the afternoon we participated in the Doctor's Dilemma contest against the teams of Massachussets, Maryland and Northern California... not winning but having a great time! Then, we have dinner at one of the numerous restaurants close to the Center. The variety of menus in the city is amazing... we found italian, chinese, japanese and mexican food very close to the Center. We were a little confused because of the light. Here in Panama we are used to be in darkness by 7:00 PM, but in Toronto it was 9:00 PM and we still had some natural light. That's why it wasn't dark yet when we assited to the Fairmount Hotel in order to attend the International Reception offered by the ACP. It was a long day, full of new experiencies and life birds! Lets see what await me for next day.

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