Wherever the Road Leads

Sweet Home, Niagara

River Road Retirement Residence

The process is complete. The McBrearty Clan – all both of us – have exited Toronto.

Over the years, the City of Toronto has been good for us. As I talk to those who decided to stay in Ottawa, the city that we, as teenagers, encouraged my father to move from, I have to wonder what a non-wanderlust life and career would have been like. As my mother gets to know her new ‘neighbors’ at River Road Retirement Residence, she is amazed at how they have so seldom ventured from Niagara Falls, where they were born and raised.

Staying in one place has always seemed like such a foreign concept to us.

However, Toronto has outlived its usefulness. The modern Toronto has evolved into an international city. Long gone is the city where I attended high school and had my first full-time job. To me, like any large city, it has way more cons than pros.

My mother, at a sprightly 93, did a valiant job in packing up her belongings and memories gathered up over the past seventeen years living in her Senior’s condo.



THIS time, not wanting a repeat of MY disastrous move to Niagara, I rented the biggest trailer that U-Haul offered.


Packing and moving was traumatic enough for my mother; downsizing at the same time was asking too much at once. So we moved a lot of articles that have since been donated to the Salvation Army or the dumpster. But this gave my mother the opportunity to see what would fit in her new ‘digs’, what was needed, what she had fourteen of, and what could be chunked.

Not completely finalized but nearly there…






She has a kitchenette with a bar fridge and her electric kettle. Among the first things we did was to rush out to buy a microwave. However, with three squares a day, then cake, cookies, coffee and tea always set up in the ‘bistro’, I may be inheriting an unused microwave.

The Residence was built as a hotel, originally, on Niagara Falls’ historic River Road, which runs along the Niagara River Gorge. It is a very scenic location.


My mother seems to be settling in well, making new friends but still enjoying her private time.

And eating very well.

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  1. Lisa  September 29, 2016

    Awesome to see transition went well

  2. Morag  September 30, 2016

    Glad to see the visual. Your mother described it well but much better to see rather than imagine. You have done a great job moving your mom and she does seem to be enjoying the change. She was describing some of her neighbours and mentioning that most were from the immediate area.


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