Sunday, Aug. 28, 2011 @ 9:38 pm
I've managed to mostly put work out of my head for the last week. Being around my parents, who are majorly fussy about everything, was not helping the situation, so Daniel and I took off for the island.
We rode our bikes onto the ferry and sailed across to the island. On the far side, we rode with light packs down to the city: a blissful 33 km ride through farmland, waysides, and subdivisions. Filling my face with blackberries at every rest stop, the smokey sweet vanilla rich berries, so soft, crushing with gentle tongue pressure and melting down my throat. Riding beside fields being ploughed, past bloated smiling pigs larger than dining room table tops. The salt air mixed with the smell of rich earth, oak leaves crisp and the grasses golden.
I couldn't stop smiling.
In Victoria, we stayed in a guesthouse associated with a brewpub. Jetted soaker tub in the corner, antique furniture, and breakfast delivered to our door promptly at 8:30am. The first morning, I woke at 7am sharp to the roaring of a Twin Otter taking off from the harbour. Gulls calling, and the rush of city traffic.
We spend the days eating fine food, cruising the city and the waterfront on two wheels. Drinking late into the night with old friends. Walking and walking and walking, my neck sore from staring up at the architecture of this city that I love intensely.
What I know now is that we must return there, the sooner the better. Vancouver is my first home, but in Victoria resides my heart. I can be myself there, and I feel free and creative and happy and full of wonder.
To be fair, being in Vancouver has reawakened my love for this city too. We ride over 40 km each day, either to the sea or to the mountains, the clanging of my chain across my gears soothing like my beating heart.
We meet old friends at Crab Park, tossing our empties to the Chinaman bottle collector. Hipster girls and guys, hah, yeah, it's good to be home. Cruising around Stanley Park in darkness, a row of LED turtles a silent blinking parade. In the park, watching a movie outdoors, hundreds of people, and I am among them.
The swaying trees. The Lions Gate Bridge and my legs pushing into the pedals and the ocean black and shimmery so far below the bridge deck. Gleaming yellow sulfur piles, dinosaur red container cranes, my harbour, my heart, my Vancouver.
The cities foil each other. The pace of life, the degree of beauty, the character of the people. I am at home in both places. How to decide? I could be happy in either, but as in love, I would choose the more stable, the less extravagant, the more intelligent, the one with subtle beauty and tamed passions: Victoria.