Vancouver, here I come!

I’m sitting in the international terminal at Brisbane airport, very early in the morning, awaiting a Korean Air flight to Seoul en route to Vancouver, for a two month mini-sabbatical.


It feels nice, but a bit surreal. Even though I’ve done this routine many times, it still feels weird that we’ve left the new home and dogs for that long in the hands of our house sitter and that after the best part of a day sitting on airplanes, I’ll be in another city in another country.

Anyway, the choice of destination flows from a conversation my wife Jan and I have had on previous visits to Vancouver that we’d like to see what it is like to live there for a while. While I have been there many times (I think this is my 11th visit to Vancouver) and Jan has been there a lot too, we both decided we’d like to try an extended stay. And after over 22 years with Buckley Vann, a sabbatical of sorts seemed like fun. So here we go.

We’ll be staying the first part of the trip in Richmond, courtesy of our friends Karen and Louis, who have kindly offered us their place while they are in Australia for a few weeks. I’m looking forward to spending some time in a more suburban location of the city, and one that has recently (in 2009) had a Skytrain service extended to it. We’ll have Christmas at a downtown restaurant with our son, his girlfriend and some mates, then head up to Whistler for a few days in the new year with our daughter and her partner (our son and his crew will already be there), before settling in a one bedroom apartment downtown, on the main street, Robson St, in the West End.

I’m looking forward to revisiting familiar places, like the excellent South East False Creek Olympic Village:

and further out, like Port Moody:

I’m also looking forward to getting to see more areas of the city and getting to know the whole place in more depth.

While it is mainly a holiday, I’ll be catching up with friends and colleagues there, particularly Gordon Price, who has been instrumental in my getting to know the city and its planners and urbanists better. I’ve already a made contact with many, and am keen to meet more, so feel free to get in touch! Gordon will also be hosting another soirĂ©e at his place on 23 January so I hope to see familiar faces and meet new ones then too.

So all the best for the festive season to you all and I look forward to it all!

Greg Vann
22 December 2014


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