I don’t normally associate the word home with Victoria. I rarely see eye to eye with this city and the image its residents try to project. I am not hip, I am not liberal, and I don’t eat quinoa. I like driving trucks, I believe in the pipeline (Fucking sue me), and I don’t wear anything ironically. I could go on for hours about all of the reasons I feel as though I don’t belong here, but I digress.
However, on days like today, the beauty of this incredible city reminds me how invariably lucky I am to live here.
Today was my perfect day. Cloudy without raining, windy but still pleasant, colourful clouds painted like chunky brushstrokes across the sky. We took the girls into the city and then beyond, into the Cook Street Village. We walked through trees, over moss, tromped over dirt trails. Ate lunch at our favourite restaurant, and went to the girl’s favourite park. We played until our cheeks were rosy and our fingers needed a tea to warm up. We meandered back towards the downtown, and I decided to take photos of all of the beauty that the city has to offer.
Cherry blossoms, moss covered stone work, breathtaking architecture. Some of the photos turned out, others were meant only to be remembered in the mind’s eye. The smells of the journey were incredible, and if there’s an app for capturing scent that I don’t yet know about, please let me know!
The moral of this little story is this: the attitude of a select group of people does not make a city. Just because I may not fit in socially, does not mean that I can’t be enamoured with the beauty of this amazing little city, my incredible little island home. I don’t need to open my mouth, I needn’t engage people in mindless arguments over private beliefs, I need only take a deep breath, and drink in the majesty of the mountains pressed against the ocean. I live a three hour drive from a ski resort, and a three hour drive from a rain forest. I can wear flip flops every day of the year, and I live across the street from a forest that is home to wild animals, and loud waterfalls. My children are experiencing a lifestyle that is native only to this island, nowhere else can they experience so many different landscapes in one city. We swim in glacial pools in summer, go hiking in winter, and go to the beach whenever we damn well please.
I love this city.
I could care less about having a friend here, I need only to smell the ocean every morning from my doorstep to feel at peace with who I am, and where I live. Although I may never be able to call this my home, I can say with certainty that a piece of my heart will always remain here.
Tomorrow, when faced with dropping my child off at school and being forced to interact with people I feel no connection to, please remind me to first re-read this post, and then take myself for a walk in the woods. I’m not sorry for being anti-social, but I am sorry that I sometimes let that social anxiety cloud my ability to appreciate where I am and what I have.
Soundtrack of the day?
Smoke + Mirrors, the new album by Imagine Dragons