Farewell to Vancouver, and the West


in Canada, Daily updates, Travel

Hilary McNaughton and I, Edgemont Village. Photo credit: Jonathan Morissette

Some sort of melancholic poem might be appropriate here, but I’ve been too busy to prepare one.

Tomorrow morning, I am to wake at 4:30am in order to cross town to the airport, get through whatever kind of security screening they feel inclined to subject me to, and board my 8:30am flight. Stopping in Edmonton en route, I should reach Gatwick Airport, outside London, around 3:40am on Thursday (GMT).

I am not the only one heading off during this space of time. As I understand it, Neal is in the air right now on his way to China. In the next few days, Kerrie and Nolan will be leaving for Ghana. I wish all of them the very best, and a safe journey.

Meeting with people during the past few days, as well as speaking with them and corresponding, has been highly gratifying. Meeting Jonathan, Emerson, Hilary, and Nick at various times today was likewise very welcome. Speaking to Meghan, Viktoria, Sarah, et all was certainly also appreciated. By far the biggest negative aspect of going to Oxford will be the breadth of separation created between my family, friends, and I. Undoubtedly, the two years will provide at least a few new ones. With luck, I’ll have the chance to introduce them to people who come visit me in Oxford.

I really should have cleared the contents of my cell phone after calling everyone to say goodbye, but, alas, Meghan Mathieson can testify to the quality of my memory. If I missed you, it’s probably because I didn’t have a copy of your phone number archived somewhere in my GMail folders.

In any case, I still have a few little bits of packing to do, which I’d like to deal with before it gets late. It’s impressive how all the bits and bobs that I’ve spent so long sorting and packing will probably amount to very little once I actually get to Oxford. I will not, for instance, have the slightest thing with which to decorate my room. All such concerns really ought to be pushed aside for the moment, however. When next I write, I shall still be your faithful blogging correspondent: now with a United Kingdom posting.

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

sasha September 21, 2005 at 2:47 pm

by my calaulations, you should be at the airport now, and hopefully security has troubled you so little that you’re already sitting down with a coffee and reading material to await departure. Bon voyage! Vancouver and the West won’t be the same in your absence.

Tristan Laing September 22, 2005 at 6:34 am

I can’t help but quip that Oxford is still whole heartedly “The West”, and that I don’t think you’ll have left behind any of the metaphysical ground on which we so comfortably rest.

Nick September 22, 2005 at 8:00 am

I hope you’ve had a relaxing journey and have arrived safely. Vancouver may be far away, but Oslo is just 90 minutes from Stanstead airport. If you don’t visit, I will!

Kerrie September 23, 2005 at 2:59 am

Hahah I agree with Tristan: “zing!”

Milan September 23, 2005 at 1:44 pm

You should know that I mean ‘The West’ as in Nalgene bottles, not ‘The West’ as in Plato.

Anonymous March 17, 2006 at 12:49 am

The Crawl
Spirit of the West

Well we’re good old boys, we come from the North Shore
Drinkers and carousers the likes you’ve never seen
And this night by God! We drank ‘til there was no more
From the Troller to the Raven with all stops in between.

It all began one afternoon on the shores of Ambleside
We were sittin’ there quite peacefully with the rising of he tide
When an idea it came to mind for to usher in the Fall
So we all agreed next Friday night we’d go out on the crawl


We planned to have a gay old time, the cash we did not spare
We left all the cars at home and paid the taxi fare
I got out to Horseshoe Bay a little after five
From a table in the corner I heard familiar voices rise


Spirits they ran high that night old stories we did share
Of the days when we were younger men and never had a care
The beer flowed like a river and we drank the keg near dry
So we drained down all our glasses and were thirsty bye and bye


Park Royal Hotel, The Rusty Gull, Square-Rigger and Queens Cross
We’d started out with eight good boys but half had gotten lost
For you’ll never keep the lads together when their eyes began to rove
So there was just the three of us that made it to Deep Cove


We arrived out at The Raven just in time for the last call
The final destination of this the first annual crawl
We dug deep into our pockets there was no money to be found
Nine miles home and for walking we are bound

(chorus – repeat)

-This song is written about North Vancouver, and some of the pubs contained therein.

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