Good Bye, Vancouver

It should be a wrenching good bye, since most of my 74 years were spent here, in this city. I expected to be sad,a bit nostalgic for the good days and the bad nights, but it’s not happening. Instead, I am anxious to get on with actually moving,purging,reordering and refocusing. It feels like freedom. I look forward to meeting new people and exploring my new home, Victoria the lovely. My friends in Vancouver are sad to see me go, but I admit I enjoy being missed. I miss them, but there is a ferry, folks.

Having said all that, why is it so very easy to leave a city I once loved ?

Let me count the ways : first, Vancouver doesn’t know what it is. The onslaught of wealth from Asia has made it one of the most expensive cities in which to buy a home or raise a family. People born here find they have to move to Surrey to do that. Condos stand empty because they are simply investment vehicles. The result is a palpable lack of community, a hole at the centre. The fact that London has the same problem is cold comfort.

Second: while loudly proclaiming how green and sustainable our building plans are, we force citizens to accept high density planning done badly. The small business owners trying to survive in a city without rent controls smell a rat at City Hall. Mayor Robinson is in bed with developers and big money, they say. It adds up to a lot of discontent among ordinary folks like me and my friends.

Third: the weather sucks! Due to Climate Crisis, we now get 30percent more rain and correspondingly less sunshine than in the past. The humidity is horrendous, it’s like living in a rainforest. Oh, of course we are.

In due time I expect to find flaws in Victoria as well, but for now it looks like a friendly small town with a lively arts scene and flowering trees everywhere. Come to think of it, Victoria is a lot like the Vancouver of another time.

One thought on “Good Bye, Vancouver

  1. Hi there, Monika, thank you for sharing your impression of Vancouver not being as green and sustainable as it might seem (living in very windy Wellington, New Zealand, I cannot comment on the weather part…). Striking a balance between environmental, commercial and social needs and wants will always be tricky, I suppose. Have a look at the blog we’re running over at for some inspiring and (hopefully) credible examples of urban sustainability leadership!

    Best regards from across the Pacific..

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