Friend Tracey sent a link to a Globe and Mail article written by Gary Mason about the misery in Vancouver. I hate it when someone writes better than I do and he does. Read this and weep.
“For years, Vancouver has dined out on its reputation for being one of the most beautiful and liveable cities in the world. Honours from everyone from The Economist to Mercer, whose annual Quality of Living ranking always reserves a spot near the top for the city, paint a picture of Eden-like bliss. If it’s not the splendour of the surrounding ocean and mountains they’re gushing about, it’s the city’s multiethnic makeup and low crime rate. And the sushi ain’t bad either.Sometimes, however, you do wonder whether those conducting these assessments ever talk to people who are actually living in the city. If they did, one suspects it might dim their utopian view.”
By the way, the sample was huge with 400,000 people. The article does not reveal when it was done but most probably before my March 2017 arrival. Young people (18-24) suffer from profound loneliness. Ouch! Mason provided many insights: “It’s not easy to put a finger precisely on how, but it does have something to do with its soul, an essence that made it such a wonderful place to be once upon a time In many respects, Vancouver is now a place you try to survive as much as enjoy. All the problems are well known, the greatest being the high cost of housing.” I do love Mason’s conclusion: “The next mayor needs to be talking about why so many people who live in Vancouver are unhappy. And what, if anything, can be done about it.”
This is how misery builds on misery. Never in all my days have I ever seen such profound rudeness. People, particularly young people, do not keep social commitments. They do not call or email when they say they will, they do not show up for lunches and suppers, then they magically disappear from your life. So even the most social of people give up and everyone wanders about in their alienated, passive-aggressive state. There are, of course, exceptions but generally they come from elsewhere. My tolerance has become nil, life (when one is 75) is too short for the likes of them. It is anxiety producing and demeaning to be treated like dirt. If I wanted to mother someone I would have chosen to have children, but did not. Tracey is going to live in New Zealand soon and I shall die. Well, not exactly but she is probably going to be irreplaceable.
But no more wallowing in misery. Wallow shall be the word of the day. It is such a fun word. pigs wallow in the mud: loll about/around, roll about/around, lie about/around, splash about/around; slosh, wade, paddle; informal splosh. 2 a ship wallowing in stormy seas: roll, lurch, toss, plunge, pitch, reel, rock, flounder, keel, list; labor. 3 she seems to wallow in self-pity: luxuriate, bask, take pleasure, take satisfaction, indulge (oneself), delight, revel, glory; enjoy, like, love, relish, savor; informal get a kick out of, get off on.
You had to be there, but you were not. I was walking along Smithe going to water aerobics, looked up and saw Otto Tausk, the new director of VSO. I was jumping up and down (the poor man)
Me: I know who you are! I know who you are!! I am so excited about this season I have season tickets and I am a legacy circle member!
He: Thank you for your support!
Then last night I went to the concert with Renee Fleming. OMG! The orchestra, in my humble opinion, has never sounded better. It was stirring, all of the energy and enthusiasm was palpable. And, oh my goodness, Renee Fleming. The greatest clothes ever – superb dresses and, by the way, she can sing. I had the best seat in the house, it seemed. Front row of the dress circle. I guess I knew what I was doing a few months ago when I purchased tickets. It is impossible to pin point the best moment. She sang Danny Boy, I sobbed silently and convulsively. She sang it at John McCain’s funeral, it had been chosen for this concert months before. Then it ended with Ave Maria which is treasured and one song on the playlist for In Conversation and In Contemplation. People were so very nice to me, many knew my name. A bartender gave me a glass of water as my GERD was slightly bothersome and had fears of a coughing spell. I complemented people on their attractive clothes. I did look pretty good myself (she said humbly). All in all it was a joyous occasion. Unfortunately, the vast majority of Vancouverites were not there, either at home or walking their dogs. A funny moment on the way to the Orpheum. A homeless man was sitting in front of the liquor store on Seymour. I was wearing my bright yellow Norwegian fisherman’s hat and my rubber rain coat. Honest to goodness this conversation took place.
He: Are you going incognito?
Me: Trying to anyway.
The photograph is the stage at the Orpheum – the acoustics in that theatre are amazing. SF’s Davies Hall had to have its acoustics redone – the good old Orpheum is perfect the way it is. An usher said that the Dress Circle has the best acoustics in the house. I will take her word for it.
What am I doing this evening? Going to another concert, thank you very much.
I emailed computer guru Chris in Vietnam expressing my joy that yesterday’s blog was posted.
He: Nae bother wee lassie x Thanks, Chris
Me: I thought you were in Vietnam not Scotland. Hahahaha Alexis