Posted by: TomA | 28 April 2007

Leaving Vancouver

Tomorrow morning Becky and I leave Vancouver, having been here for around seven months or so. Today wasn’t quite the pleasant relaxing day we hoped for, instead of cycling around Stanley Park in the sunshine, it’s been a day of packing and lugging heavy boxes and suitcases to the post office.

I feel rather sad to be leaving the city now, and not just because the weather has finally turned from wet and miserable to beautifully sunny and mild. I’ll miss having inane chit-chat with the lady from Singapore on the bus home from work; chatting to the guys in Zulu (my third home in Vancouver, a fantastic record shop with an awesome second hand selection) about music, the UK, travel etc; and the genuinely friendly attitude of people. Plus the mountains, I know next year I’ll be pining for the mountains.

CREB were particularly sweet when I left work, taking me out to lunch (to Banana Leaf, for Malaysian curry) and giving me a $50 gift certificate to spend in Zulu (quickly spent on albums by The Fall, Bill Callahan, Dälek, Arab Strap and The Books). It has been enjoyable working there, albeit frequently stressful, with fun people in the office and interesting subject matter. Some of the studies freaked me out, some appeared trivial, others simply intriguing. At the least, it’s given me a thorough insight into medical research and the pharmaceutical firms that fund them.

I should also report that I had possibly the most entertaining bus journey ever last night.  On the number 4, from UBC to my apartment in Kitsilano, the driver let the bus fill up and pulls away, before welcoming us aboard his bus over his tannoy. He then proceeds to introduce his very own trivia quiz and unveils a hanging display of chocolate prizes from his rear view mirror. Four rounds of questions had most of the bus cheering and clapping – although it must be said, in John’s excitement at hosting his quiz, he did forget to stop and let people on and off his bus a couple of time… Apparently, he does this every night on the same route, with a fresh set of prizes and new questions. Bless.

So, first stop is San Francisco (after half an hour changing planes in Portland, OR) tomorrow afternoon. And I’m excited…

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