What seems like an entire summer was packed into this past August long weekend.
- Richmond Night Market
- Squamish Outdoor Club (this doesn’t actually exist yet, but it will)
- Vancouver Pride Parade
- Powell St. Festival
If you haven’t had a chance to taste, see, smell, and hear the Richmond Night Market and live in the GVRD – come on! It doesn’t compare to food/shopping markets in Asia but it is a close second and is now accessible via rapid transit. $1.50 will get you admission and about $20 will give you plenty of change to try all the snacks, desserts, and bevs that catch your eye. This Night Market adventure was brought to you by tako yaki (aka octopus pancake balls), a lot of squid, BBQ’d skewers of everything you can think of, and HK egg waffles. While we ate our delicious meal comprising of dishes from a wide variety of Asian cultures, we had the pleasure of listening to a hair metal band (that could not have looked more out of place) play music to a diverse crowd of people (primarily Asian families) that would not necessarily be the type to listen to such music. Nevertheless, they were adorable, and we all were amused (and it seems the crowd was too).
The Squamish Outdoor Club went on their inaugural outing to Squamish Valley on Saturday. It began at the Squamish Wal-Mart where we all scrambled to fill our baskets with snacks on snacks on snacks – well, enough candy to feed a classroom full of kids. After a few more stops for hydration and some floatation devices, we ended up at Angel’s Paradise. The trail leading to AP is hidden by an inconspicuous road and the trail makes its way down a river and stops at some random train tracks. From there, it is another hidden trail that you have to climb under and over branches and then you have to straddle this log to get across a creek. Then all of a sudden, you are in Paradise: a beautiful swimming pond that is glacier fed with extremely cold water, but this water is crystal clear. Surrounding the pond is a giant rock slide that developed into mossy caves. It’s like the movie Ferngully and I felt like a forest nymph about to awaken the spirits of the trees. Because the pond is not conducive to immersing your body in it for more than 3 seconds, we headed to Cat Lake, which reminded me of all the best lakes on Vancouver Island. We spent hours and hours floating around the lake, swimming, straddling more logs, and laughing at how ridiculous we, the Squamish Outdoor Club is.
Now onto Pride – my first Pride parade ever despite my posse of homosexual male friends. It was a blast and it made me absolutely giddy every time a new float came by. I was pretty impressed with the footwear that some of the float gals walked in – 6 inch heels all around the West End? That is commitment. The vibe was incredible and everyone had smiles on their faces. I am tearing up as I write this thinking about how far we’ve come as human beings (but yet have so much further to go) when it comes to acceptance.
After Pride, The Tip and I cycled over to the downtown east side to get a late lunch at the Powell St. Festival which is an omatsuri (Japanese festival) of sorts celebrating the rich Japanese history in the neighbourhood. There were tons and tons of cute Japanese kids wearing yukatas and kimonos – lots of half Japanese, half Caucasian kids, which got me thinking about having some of my own (some day soon). I have been spoiled this weekend with Asian food vendors and had to top the weekend off with some Spam sushi and yaki mochi (BBQ’d rice cakes).
We ended this delightful weekend with a BBQ in a beautiful backyard just off of Commercial. Between stuffing my face with burgers, I learned how to play darts. It turns out that hand-eye coordination is not really my thing.
I am writing this as I am ferrying to Vancouver Island. The BC Ferries theme song (which sounds a lot like the song from Jurassic Park) is about to play, which is my cue that the ferry is about to dock. Here’s to another summer weekend on the West Coast!