When I look at you, walk along you, discover you, I have the song Whirlwind by Joseph, in mind. Vancouver, you surprise me but also throw me. You are both welcoming and recalcitrant. You open the door but do not let me in. You enthrall me by your lightness and your sweetness of life, and yet, your acrimony frustrates and upsets me.
You see me but do not recognize me. I’m like a commodity to you. A product whose value must be evaluated; warranted; approved. After four years spent living in the province of Quebec, I thought I had passed the test, showed my motivation, my determination, my ability to adapt. Indeed, I showed you, even demonstrated, that I chose this place as my new country.
As an explorer, I want to learn about you, explore you, discover you – my new home whose vastness fascinates me. So, I moved to meet you, and like the pioneers, my ancestors, I settled down my bags here to build a new future and create a new life. I am well aware that you are different, and this is one of the million reasons that drew me to establish myself in British Columbia. I was curious about this city that offers simultaneously a cosmopolitan life and a wild setting. Indeed, by learning to know you, by searching, I found that you are rich and alive. Culture access (musical, theatrical, gastronomic, etc.) is easy and affordable. The “icing on the cake” is an environment where nature is ubiquitous.
Thanks to you I’m growing up. Change. Resilience. These words have never made more sense in my life than since I moved here. Of your rules, codes, habits and customs, I understand the merits and origins. But why are you asking me to change so much? Why don’t you take advantage of my individuality? Why do you stand so “cold and conservative” in the light of my past? I observe you and see behind your communication, your speeches that accept my origins, but still ask me to start all over again as though I were a stranger. From this paradox ensues enriching, surprising, praising, unique experiences, encounters and walks.
And at the same time, I take root a little more every day, because I love you. Thanks to you again, I learn more about who am I. I reinvent myself sometimes in pain. However, I forget everything when I meet your true nature – the beaches, the smiles of the people, the love your residents express for you.
And I think that in your way, you love me too, because you put on my side caring people who support me and back me up in the construction of our relationship.
Of the definition of “my paradise,” you are close to it and its opposite in many ways. We learn to tame each other, to build a common purpose and a team that will allow each other to flourish. I’m pretty sure of it.
We are on the road to achieve something together. Something that will allow each of us to find our place and live together.
Let’s walk hand in hand, ignore our accepted ideas and “prejudiced” ideas, and please Vancouver, take my hand, accept my love.