When I was a child, my parents occasionally took me up north - out of Toronto - on little adventures. The most common reason we had for leaving the city limits was in search of fresh, sweet corn. It never took very long to find it. After about a thirty to forty minute drive, we would happen across a corn stand off to one side of the highway. Farmers would set up shop there and only remain as long as it took to sell their fresh fruits and vegetables. Usually, that didn’t take very long at all.
Buying corn in Ontario was a bit different than buying corn in Osaka. It was completely normal for the buyer to pick up an ear of corn and pull back the husk to check its freshness. If the corn looked okay, the buyer would of course pay for it. Sometimes the buyer would take a strawberry or blueberry for a taste test - with the farmer’s permission. Of course you can’t do that in the supermarket. It’s considered stealing.
The further out my parents drove, the more cows and horses we would see dotting the landscape. It was always fun to try and count the cows or look for horses of unusual colors. The air always seemed to smell fresher up north, despite the strong smell of horses and cows.
There are many things you can do up north, especially during the spring or summer. You can participate in strawberry picking, see how honey or maple syrup is created, or even experience farm stay for a couple of weeks. Some places will even let you work off your stay with assigned farm chores.
So if you visit Toronto in the future, make sure you head up north to experience Ontario’s rich farmland as well!