I’m home after a wonderful week of old friends, fine food, great conversations, amazing massages and Vancouver scenery. Everyone talks about the weather in Vancouver but I lucked out. After a day and a half of rain, we were rewarded with sunny skies and warm days for the rest of the week!
The picture above is my 20th floor view from the Delta Vancouver Suites, a hotel and chain I highly recommend. Spread before me was Burrard Inlet with giant container ships loading and unloading at the Vancouver Docks, the Seabus beetling back and forth between downtown and North Vancouver, a busy heliport, a rail yard jammed with containers and beyond this the gorgeous mountains, their snowy caps contrasting with the dark green forest cover.
As “supernatural” as Vancouver’s location is, it’s people who made it supernatural for me. My friends were so loving and caring. Three long memory-filled meals with my childhood and hometown friend Bob, whom I haven’t seen for 15 years, gave us both enormous joy. The ease and comfort between old friends and Old Souls helped both Bob and I deal with our recent challenges. Spending time with him was a great tonic for me!
Through Bob, years back, I met Dan, a superb guitarist with an encyclopaedic knowledge of pop music. We’ve been in touch online and I often post Dan’s forwards here. I spent a stimulating evening with Dan and his partner Joan who works in the Vancouver Library System. A delicious meal at Foo’s Ho Ho in Chinatown (102 E. Pender, go there!) was followed by a glass of wine overlooking English Bay from the lounge of the Sylvia Hotel, a luxurious heritage hotel and landmark. More fine conversation ensued.
Lori worked with Linda and me at IF you have to get dressed in the morning for over five years and was very instrumental in the success of the business. We hadn’t seen each other in 20 years so we spent a fine evening sharing a meal, a bottle of wine and our shamanic experiences. Lori is another Old Soul who helps young people overcome addiction.
Speaking of Old Souls, you first met Travis in Be Happy, my 2010 year-end review. He is successfully pursuing his career as a registered massage therapist at an upscale spa in Vancouver. It worked out that I was able to get three of Travis’ amazing two-hour massages during my stay. As well, once again he came to my rescue and helped me recognize and reconcile some difficult steps in my personal evolution. I am blessed to have Travis in my life. I have never met anyone like him. The wisdom of the Ancients shines through his eyes.
A walk through Stanley Park with Dan one sunny afternoon turned up two of the most unusual encounters of my trip. I had no clue that blue herons nested in trees!
On the edge of Stanley Park in the tops of mature trees were dozens of large stick nests, bigger than crows’ nests, clearly visible in the leaf-bare trees and inhabited by blue herons. Dan said once the chicks are born the leaves are on the trees and it becomes “Pterodactyl City” with the raucous hungry cries of all the heron chicks. I had assumed blue herons were shore birds, nesting among reeds.
In Morton Park right on English Bay, A-maze-ing Laughter, a public art exhibit by Chinese artist Yue Minjun, is the happiest place in Vancouver. Fourteen cast bronze male figures, each about 9 feet tall and 550 pounds, exhibit the postures of laughter. Their hilarity is spontaneous and palpable in their presence. The figures were shipped from China, welded into place and reinforce our need to be happy every day.
On the warm sunny days the sidewalks were thronged with people, crowded on into the evening along the trendy streets with bright boutiques and coffee shops, the air alive with languages from around the planet. The man in a wheelchair with pigeons sitting on his shoulders begging for change in front of a shop that sells $5,000 handbags was a cruel disparity often repeated.
I was glad to be getting out of the hive, into the air and back where there is room to breathe and move freely and be happy. But it was a seamless trip that dispelled the winter blahs. I return rejuvenated and ready for my summer adventures wherever they may take me. Thanks for a great time, Vancouver!