Home for now

You only live once is a truthful concept, and in many ways it played a role in inspiring my husband and me to relocate to Canada. My home – the UK – is a mess as the international world looks on amused at the fall of the once dominating nation. As a gay couple living…

The Canadian paradox

I landed in Vancouver a little over a year ago. Coming to Canada is not an obstacle course for a Frenchman. If you are under 35, you can apply for a Working Holiday Permit, which allows you to stay and work on Canadian soil for up to two years, although you do still have to win…

From the Prairies to the Pacific

By the time I turned 18, I was desperate to escape. Growing up in the blistering cold of Prairie Manitoba, my life was sheltered. My parents built a loving home, my grandparents were within walking distance and my friends, literally, lived next door. But I wanted experiences; I wanted adventure. I wanted a place where…

On a tightrope

You, yourself, arrived in Vancouver three months ago, a year ago, ten years ago maybe. So perhaps you too have had that feeling of dancing in the rain, of walking on a tightrope. I chose Vancouver for reasons that were commonplace: the weather, the language, the price of the plane ticket. The important decision had…

Here, no one fights with anyone

Everything smelled like cookies. It had been a week since I had slept in a comfortable bed. It had been a 48 hour flight and a two hour wait in customs. But, we made it from South Africa to Canada and now, everything smelled like cookies. The tumultuous ’80s in South Africa was my childhood.…

A sense of belonging and tranquility

Vancouver’s multicultural scene can make you feel as if you’re walking around a foreign country for a few moments. As a Mexican immigrant who moved to Vancouver 13 years ago, I constantly find myself trying to decipher what language other immigrants are speaking while out on the street. Sometimes I guess correctly, other times I…

Renters in Vancouver may determine who takes over power at City Hall

The past year has seen some of the most dramatic and unlikely political outcomes in provincial history. By the thinnest of margins, and ultimately on the call of B.C.’s Lieutenant Governor, Christy Clark and her B.C. Liberals were finally ousted from the legislature – a stunning end to the party’s 16-year run in power. With…

Life in a bubble

On the first day of my journalism class, not only was I late but I was lost. My classroom was located around a corner, tucked away, nearly impossible to find. Unfortunately for me, everyone else managed to find it. As I walked in, interrupting my professor, all of my classmates turned to look at me.…

Ski culture

I come from a big resort in the Alps, and my curiosity and love for snowy mountains pushed me to travel to the west coast of Canada last fall. Having known the hectic lifestyle of the seasonal worker and also aiming to discover a new way of life, it was in Vancouver that I decided…

The Canadian side of Vancouver

I heard about the city of Vancouver long before I came here. Vancouver, “the warmest part of Canada,” we used to say scornfully, in my childhood home of Edmonton, Alberta. Vancouver seemed somewhat less than Canadian with it being so far off behind the Rocky Mountains. Vancouverites didn’t slide to school on snow-packed roads the…