oh vancouver, how you took my heart
June was host to a blissful four weeks in the lovely Vancouver. It has been a week since I returned to the UK and while pleased to see my family again, I’ve been subject to a bout of post-holiday blues. I am so grateful to have been given the opportunity to go there: to my parents who paid for my flight tickets and to my boyfriend and his family for welcoming me into their home and allowing me to experience all the city had to offer.
On a quiet afternoon in the mountains of Whistler, tucked away in a corner of Starbucks with a cup of London Fog, I wrote in my journal: ‘Vancouver has taken my heart in a way I never could have expected.’ That was the first time I’d had a chance to sit down and mull over my thoughts before putting pen to paper. If you were to ask me to sum up my first ever holiday to Canada in one line, that would be my answer, again and again.
Before I had set foot in the city I was uncertain what to anticipate, what to expect. I had created a distorted image in my head: one that is difficult for me to describe but it was based on inflated blanket assumptions I had drawn from the snippets of insight from my boyfriend. It turned out to be so unlike how I’d imagined it, so much more.
It was a perfect union of my Western and Eastern identities in physical form, merged in a quietly striking sort of harmony. Both cultures sat side by side together – equally. And the feeling I derived from it was startlingly unfamiliar but one I happily indulged in, the softest of blankets in which to wrap myself.
And as if that wasn’t enough, being a foodie at heart, I was spoilt for choice with a variety of cuisines to choose from. I tried Vietnamese pho and Korean naengmyeon for the first time – both noodle dishes but the warm heartiness of pho contrasting the light and refreshing tang of naengmyeon – and now I’m having intense cravings for bowls and bowls of the stuff.
The views were also beautiful: the city set against a magnificent backdrop of mountains and the skyline was stunning, especially when viewed from Stanley Park and Granville Island. I loved how one day I could be thrust into the hustle and bustle of Downtown with all the high-rises towering over me and then the next I would be basking in the tranquility of VanDusen Botanical Gardens surrounded by stretches of greenery as far as the eye could see.
So thank you, Vancouver.
Thank you for a wonderful four weeks and for all the memories I was able to collect one by one.
Until we meet again.
Dear reader, it has been a long time since I inhabited this little online home of mine and it fills me with delight to finally return. I do hope you are well. This is a first in a series of posts about my trip to Vancouver – with written accounts and photos aplenty. I’d love for you to follow along and experience the city through my eyes.
Before you go I’d like to ask you: Have you been to Vancouver and if so, did you like it? And have you ever found yourself falling hopelessly in love with a new city? Do share your thoughts in the comments below!