Saturday, 17 March 2012

Vancouver Video Journal #1 - Seawall: Burrard Bridge to Lion's Gate Bridge

About a decade ago I worked in a coffeeshop in Richmond, BC. We had this regular customer we called Charlie. Charlie wasn't his real name, though. Charlie was a name made up by one of the baristas who was tired of calling him the Grande-Extra-Shot-Mocha Guy. For some reason Charlie was reluctant to tell us his real name. When we would ask him, he would say things like, "I am whoever you'd like me to be" and "Names just get in the way." He was a weird guy, but we liked him.

The reason I'm talking about Charlie is because of what he liked to say at the end of each transaction. He said three little words that have stuck with me all these years. Three little words that could mean one of many things, depending on the situation. Charlie would always (always) hand us a five-dollar bill to pay for his drink and there would usually be a bit of change. Every time we dropped the change into his opened hand he would say, "Change is good."

Change is good.

From July 2010 to July 2011 I experienced more loss than I had ever experienced in my entire life before that. With great loss comes great change. The change was terrifying at first. I was living a new life, in a new home, with brand-new concerns...concerns I had never thought about in the ten years before that. I became reclusive. I turned to the things that had always been there for me: my books and my writing. But the change was making my writing darker, more angry. It was sucking a lot of the joy out of the books I was reading.

I kept telling myself, "Change is good." Heck, when I was in my late teens/early twenties I changed up my life as frequently as I changed toilet paper rolls. So why was it so difficult to do/believe at this point in my life? One very miserable night in January I started writing about the happiest times in my life and it seemed that most of them took place during my brief time living in Kitsilano in 1999/2000. As memory after memory left my mind and filled up the page in front of me, it became clear. And for the first time in more than a year, I knew what I needed to do.

Change is good!

On March 1st I moved out of the suburbs and back into the city (Vancouver, BC). It has been a reawakening of sorts. Yes, it's way more expensive to live here, but it's worth every penny. I've been more creative/inspired in the past few weeks than I had been in the four months previous. Everywhere I turn, there is something that gets my creative juices flowing. During a walk around the Seawall yesterday (March 16th, 2012) I randomly started shooting video of things that were making me smile: geese, statues, horizon lines, clouds, etc. I rounded a corner and to my delight saw a rainbow over the Lion's Gate Bridge. I stood there and stared at it for almost a half hour, despite the rain that was soaking me (I still haven't gotten used to carrying an umbrella with me at all times...even if there isn't a cloud in sight, because in Vancouver the weather seems to change every ten minutes).

While I was walking home from my epic journey around the Seawall I thought it might be fun to do a bit of a video journal of some of the things in Vancouver that help me feel creative (and at peace). My first entry is "Seawall: Burrard Bridge to Lion's Gate Bridge". The music is one of my cornerSUN compositions called "Pori".

Change is good...and this is one of the reasons why:

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