2130 Bayview Ave

the south driveway

In the 1970’s, the age of colourful if not humorous fashion, I was a teenager in Toronto.  I was also trying to discover what I might do with my life.  I remember as grade 8 began we were being asked…”what do you want to be?”  I translated that as “what do you want to do with the rest of your life?”.

I thought I would like to be an optometrist.  I wore glasses and I saw how the optometrist had helped me.  In fact getting glasses in grade 2 had opened up the whole world, which I suddenly able to see.  When you’ve never been able to see across the street you have no idea what it is like to slip on glasses and see clearly that far.  It was like the blind man (boy) being given his sight.

I also loved photography and thought, in due time, I would like to be a professional photographer.  I had thought about police work – but only as an RCMP officer – cause I loved their uniforms!  I had also wondered about driving transport trucks – caused I loved big trucks.  In the midst of all that wondering

Having said all that at the same time I had this sense that God was calling me to ministry and specifically Officership in The Salvation Army.  As part of the exploration process my Corps Officer, also my Dad, took a group of us over The College for Officer Training at 2130 Bayview Ave.  It was an interesting evening, and whether it was intentional or not, I found that the dozens of sessional photos hanging in the hallways had me spellbound.  I walked along seeing who I knew, how many graduated each year and looking at the changing styles of hair and uniform.

Eventually I found myself studying at the centre and enjoying the pace and focus of the weeks and months.  As quickly as it began it seemed it was over and out “on the field” we went.

What was the main building

Much time has passed since then but I’ve always enjoyed returning to CFOT to see the familiar sites, the gorgeous grounds.  A few years ago we relocated CFOT to Winnipeg and the site here was sold for development.  As I was driving by last week I decided to stop and see what has happened.  So far not much.

Both entrances still exist though the south driveway has a large gate locked and boarded over.  The north driveway takes you into a small parking lot that shows what the site is intended to finally look like.

I do hope the construction begins soon – it is a bit painful seeing it as it is now.  Here’s a couple of videos shot with my BlackBerry on the day I dropped by.

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