Mobbed at the Toronto Raptor Parade

Doors Open 2012
Ontario Law Society  Gazette

My friend Dr. Dolma had arrived in Canada three weeks previously, having immigrated from India at the end of May. We were on our way to Parkdale in the west end of Toronto, where many Tibetan folks live.

A transit worker misinformed us and we climbed the subways stairs at University and Queen to find ourselves enmeshed in a mob of parade goers. Not having been in a mob situation before, I did not think of retreating back down the subway steps, but pushed forward onto the sidewalk.

After about 3/4 of an hour trapped in a mass of pushing bodies, moving a few inches forward, then stopping, the press slowly tightening as time passed, a giant man close by noticed our struggles and offered to open the gate to let us through, into the Osgood Hall Law School lawn. Naturally the gate was locked, so this dear man offered to help us climb the eight foot wrought iron fence. Desperate to escape and worried about a stampede, we agreed. Young men were climbing and jumping down from the top; apparently one broke his leg in the fall, and saw him taken away by security men.

Dr. Dolma went first, boosted up by the big guy, then I climbed after her.   After being pushed by the large guy and pulled up by a small man at the top, I sat atop the high fence, straddling a large  spike, making it difficult to turn. The men helped me turn while Dolma attempted to twist my other foot around! Eventually I was ready to descend, and asked two young men below me to help. They willingly complied.

We were now in a much better place, and relaxed on the grass of Osgood Hall. But we had very little water or food; it was a hot day, and the crowds were too thick to leave the area. The parade was just beginning, several hours behind schedule. We roamed over to City Hall where the elite were sitting in an outdoor restaurant and the parade was being shown on big screens.

After an hour and a half the crowds were beginning to thin as the parade had turned off University Avenue, and we were able to make our way south on University to Richmond, then east towards restaurants. Finally we settled on an all day breakfast place, where we were seated quickly. There was a screen showing the festivities at City Hall, but no volume, all very civilized, unlike some other food places. “That’s what we were trying for”, the woman at the desk told me as we were leaving.

We were not out of the woods yet though. Things got worse before we reached Dolma’s downtown apartment. As we walked north on Yonge street, young men and women ran screaming up the middle of the road. We had no idea what was going on and ducked into a women’s clothing store, for ten minutes, then continued on up Yonge Street towards Dundas. Again the same thing happened, so into Shoppers Drug Mart we went, along with about fifteen other folks. After a short while the security guard told us they were locking down the store, and we must all leave.

By now my friend had found out about the shootings at City Hall. Not understanding that we were now several blocks away from there, she was quite afraid.  Taking her arm, we quickly walked the few blocks to the family apartment, where the rest of the family and my husband had gathered. (Later we heard there were also knifings outside the Eaton Centre. No one was killed during either incident.)

The fallout from these events was traumatic for both of us. Dolma and her husband had always looked after us on our India visits, and I felt a duty to do the same for her in her new country. Although I could not have foreseen any of the events that occurred, it bothered me that I got her into this mess!

Three days after the event, on our last evening visiting the family, Dolma and I were able to do some EMDR work together, with positive results. Dolma told me she felt safe and peaceful afterwards.

I was not quite so fortunate, and suffered an extremely brief TIA, (mini stroke), 10 days after the event, back home in Gibsons. All my tests, both in the ER that evening and subsequently, came out fine, with the exception of my high cholesterol.

After the TIA I received several powerful healings: First the Divine Love energy coming through at my prayer group; Reiki afterwards from three group members, including powerful energy entering my head through the medium of Al, our group leader; gentle pressure point therapy from my chiropractor, dear Dr. Shahnaz, one of my “healing goddesses”, to stabilize my blood pressure and kundalini energy, and finally an EMDR session from a close friend.

Resolution of a Past Life. Something quite unexpected happened during my session, co-led by the two of us. We were unable to complete the resource installation, meant to “facilitate the development of internal resources in clients”. Suddenly I realized in that third eye, “knowing way” that the admittedly bizarre experiences Dolma and I had on the day of the parade, mimicked a past life experience for the two of us. My friend also intuitively knew this.

Immediately I noticed a change in my energy field, I felt calmer and more grounded. I knew on a deep level that it was a lifetime when we had been males, perhaps brothers, and had to escape from a threatening situation, possibly during a war. This information allowed me to release that past life, an important one I intuited, and to also detach some from Dolma, my “Tibetan sister”.

The trip to Toronto was demanding in many ways, and very fulfilling also. Each aspect of it was an important part of my process. (See Back to My Toronto Roots)

Love & Light


Copyright 2019 Ellen Besso

Ellen Besso is a Life Coach, Counsellor & an energy worker. She is the author of An Indian Sojourn: One woman’s spiritual experience of travel & volunteering, and Surviving Eldercare: Where their needs end & yours begin, both available through Amazon.


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