Trip Wrap-Up

We’re back in Boston, after what I think was a kind of water­shed trip.

As Pam not­ed, we were in a bit of funk before we left. We were focused on the absence of Socrates, and this in turn led us to con­tem­plate the past. This trip to Van­cou­ver helped us make more of a clean break. Instead of dwelling on ‘He used to hang out here’ or ‘Now was the time when he’d usu­al­ly make a cute noise or sit on your mou­s­ing arm.’ it was ‘Here’s where we might live’ or ‘There is where you might work’. We thought about what we’ll be doing in a few months, or what we might need to do a few years down the road. We tried to imag­ine our­selves in a new house, in a new job, in a new coun­try. My friend Andy calls it a ‘Life Mul­li­gan’. I didn’t under­stand the term at first, but he explained that a Mul­li­gan is a term from golf, mean­ing essen­tial­ly a ‘do-over’. You get them in a polite game. I sus­pect it’s named after some des­per­ate­ly bad golfer who always asked if he could retake his dri­ves or putts.

(Hah! I just found it on About.com and it’s appar­ent­ly a Cana­di­an term. Accord­ing to one of the many mys­te­ri­ous ety­molo­gies of the term, a promi­nent hote­lier named David Mul­li­gan (sic) ‘fre­quent­ed St. Lam­bert Coun­try Club in Mon­tréal, Que­bec, dur­ing the 1920s. Mul­li­gan let it rip off the tee one day, wasn’t hap­py with the results, re-teed, and hit again. Accord­ing to the sto­ry, he called it a “cor­rec­tion shot,” but his part­ners thought a bet­ter name was need­ed and chris­tened it a “mul­li­gan.” Per­haps because Mr. Mul­li­gan was a promi­nent busi­ness­man — own­ing mul­ti­ple hotels — the term was more like­ly to catch on.’ At any rate, I like that the­o­ry, espe­cial­ly since the guy is both a David and a Cana­di­an.)

Any­way, Life Do-Over or not, we def­i­nite­ly seem to be restart­ing, and this trip made the Restart­ing line seem a bit clos­er and clear­er. We walked the city of Van­cou­ver sev­er­al times, took the Sky­train way out into the ‘burbs and back again in a big loop. We walked in parks, over the Granville Bridge (much to my dis­com­fort, as I still do not like walk­ing near the edge of pre­cip­i­tous areas like bridge side­walks), and to many places we would like to fre­quent (the Pub­lic Library, the Sym­pho­ny Hall, the Sea Wall — that last one by Pam alone). We looked at poten­tial con­do­mini­ums, watched for apart­ment rental signs, read news­pa­pers, watched some local TV and lis­tened to CBC radio. We bought food at local gro­ceries, pro­duce stands and bak­eries.

As for me, I hus­tled, schmoozed and did my best to learn about the local busi­ness scene, sign­ing up with 2 recruiters, and already inter­view­ing with 2 local busi­ness­es. My expe­ri­ences were near­ly all encour­ag­ing. I have a strong resume, lots of great expe­ri­ence, and I just have to work on how I present my port­fo­lio (a lit­tle rusty at that, I must admit). I found most peo­ple polite, inter­est­ing to talk to, and curi­ous about why a per­son from Boston would want to relo­cate to lit­tle-old Van­cou­ver, which does have a bit of a self-image of being a back­wa­ter eco­nom­i­cal­ly. If this is true, I’m hop­ing that the ‘big­ger fish in a small­er pond’ metaphor does hold true, and I’ll be able to make a name for myself there.

Frankly, giv­en that the cul­ture is so rich with so many immi­grants (tons of peo­ple from Chi­na and India), the cli­mate is so mild, the vis­tas so breath­tak­ing, the local gov­ern­ment enlight­ened and the pop­u­lace tol­er­ant, it’s only a mat­ter of time before the world begins to notice that this is one of the best places in the world in which to reside. Now don’t get me wrong. I’m sure I’ll miss Boston a lot, but with it’s polit­i­cal infight­ing, frigid win­ters, rude­ness, obses­sion with the Colo­nial past and theme park exploita­tion of it’s own her­itage, not to men­tion the abom­i­na­tions of Logan Air­port, the Hynes Con­ven­tion Cen­ter and Gov­ern­ment Cen­ter (ick, yuck and yech! respec­tive­ly), I’m going to have to say that it’s time for me to check out some new places.

A thought just came to me. At Pam’s and my wed­ding, some of Pam’s Aunts came over to us after the reception/luncheon, where we served Vichysoise, Poached Salmon withe some assort­ed sauces, rasp­ber­ry coulis, and Pra­line cake for a wed­ding cake. They exclaimed how they had nev­er eat­en any­thing like that before. In fact, I learned that one of them had rarely ven­tured out­side her 10-mile radius of Quin­cy. OK. Time to go now.

writ­ten while lis­ten­ing to: Strauss — Vier Let­zte Lieder — i. Früh­ling from the album “Strauss: Vier Let­zte Lieder” by Jessye Nor­man, sopra­no, The Leipzig Gewand­haus Orches­tra con­duct­ed by Kurt Masur

3 Replies to “Trip Wrap-Up”

  1. It’s only a mat­ter of time before the world begins to notice that this is one of the best places in the world in which to reside.”

    You think that’s not one of the rea­sons homes start at $400k? 🙂

  2. I fig­ured it was part­ly the influx of peo­ple from Chi­na and India, part­ly the gob­bling up of water­front prop­er­ties every­where. I checked and I did find this arti­cle on the BBC News Archives from 2002.

  3. Frankly, giv­en that the cul­ture is so rich with so many immi­grants (tons of peo­ple from Chi­na and India), the cli­mate is so mild, the vis­tas so breath­tak­ing, the local gov­ern­ment enlight­ened and the pop­u­lace tol­er­ant, it’s only a mat­ter of time before the world begins to notice that this is one of the best places in the world in which to reside.

    We agree, David … That’s why we’re head­ing your way!

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