Switching Tracks

Fall, 2022 / No. 50
Photograph of Cole Fleming by Thomas Blanchard.
Thomas Blanchard

For its kids’ issue, in 2014, Taddle Creek profiled Cole Fleming, a then eight-year-old obsessed with public transit to such a degree that he caught the attention of the head of the Toronto Transit Commission. The magazine recently spoke to Fleming, now a sixteen-year-old high school student, about where his love of transit has taken him in the intervening years, and what’s interesting him today.

“I’ve been to London and Paris since then and ridden their transit systems, so that was exciting. There was one night, in 2017, when I was eleven. We were in London and I was with a babysitter because my parents were out to a party, and I took the train with her. I don’t know why she did this, but she took me all the way out to Epping, which is as far out as you can possibly go. We went all the way out and had pizza at some restaurant and came all the way back. Transit in London is interesting because it’s so complex, so I really enjoyed London. 

“Today, I’m just kind of trying to keep up with my school work. There’s a Scotland trip coming up, and I’m looking forward to that a lot. This year I took Latin and read all about the history of Rome. I’m really into history and have been for a while now. I like knowing stuff. Travelling’s great. Especially to places that have historical significance, so it’ll be cool seeing Scotland. I’m literally going to be sleeping on a mountain for one night. 

“I’m doing baseball now, too. I usually play somewhere in the outfield, but sometimes I do first base. This is my third season in my current league. I’ve been playing for four years.

“I have no idea what I want to do as a career. It’ll become clear. But right now there’s just too much of a variety to say.

“I do remember riding the Scarborough RT and the Bloor–Danforth subway for the Taddle Creek story. Not vividly. I still remember the yard when we shot the photo in the streetcar. I’m not as interested in transit as I was. I still find it interesting looking at the plans for the future. I have no plans to get rid of all my transit maps and stuff. It’s possible my interest will come back.”