In the Loop

1 July 2020 – In & around the loop, more like it — the “loop” being a favourite & highly variable circuit of mine down to False Creek, west along one side of this end of the Creek, across the Cambie St. bridge, and back east.

As always, these strange months, much that is familiar suddenly viewed a-slant because of the new context in which I experience it.

Feet going zig-zag (“going all fractal,” I say pretentiously to myself), heading north in a near-by alley because I like alleys, with local alleys offering a less impressive alley-art presence than their Toronto counterparts, but a much more impressive structural presence, thanks to those towering hydro poles.

And this stretch, just east of Main, offers an okay bit of street art as well.

Not to mention the haze of the Coast Range Mountains, off there in the distance. (Take that, Toronto…)

I grin at a little white bird on a big blue dumpster …

peer through chain-link fence at signage for somebody’s mini-community garden …

and, finding myself at a dead end, double back out to E. 4th and Scotia.

Where a wedge of land shelters an only slightly less-mini community garden, this one with a friendly chair at the street corner.

Gardeners of the Galaxy” reads one of its signs — a banner of its evolution from one woman’s vacant-land purchase in 2010, to its current status in the coFood Vancouver Collaborative Garden Project, within the Living Systems Network of social/food/community activists.

Still on the zig-zag, still going all fractal, soon I’m past the Galaxy, in behind Main St. on something I thought was just a lane but is wide enough for an official name. I am now on Lorne St., where an old pseudo-vintage Mexican restaurant mural …

leads to a door with an entirely spring-2020 sign of its own.

(See what I meant earlier, about familiar old landmarks thrown a-slant in a new context?)

I didn’t sit down with those galaxy gardeners, and I don’t join this sober new version of “borrachos aquรญ”, either.

But I do sink down on this bench for a bit …

just off Quebec St. in Creekside Park, a tribute to the one-time CPR railway yards down here. There’s even a remnant of train track.

Not that much later, just a bit round the Creek-end curve on its north side, I sit on another bench, contemplate gulls/crows/ducks/geese/kids/cyclists/geezers/dogs/etc for a while, and very idly wonder why there always seem to be a few people who spurn benches to clamber right down to water’s edge and perch on the rocks.

Well, why not.

And I walk. And I shamelessly eavesdrop on passing conversations. And I helpfully alert a young mother to the cloth storybook her child has just pitched out of the stroller. And I share giggles with another woman, who has just taken a photo of a bit of doggerel on a utility box that manages to be rude, very rude, about the Kardashian sisters and — while the author is at it — Donald Trump as well.

No, I will not show it to you. All those people get quite enough free publicity as it is.

Moving on. Literally!

My favourite dog bench, dog muzzle and dog bowl in Coopers Park , with extra water courtesy of all the recent rain …

which is located right at the Cambie Street bridge. This sends me sharp right, then spiralling upwards, to walk south across the bridge.

A favourite view over my favourite ferry dock — Spyglass — before I spiral back down to ground level, and start east along the Sea Wall.

Heading toward Olympic Village and yes! Himy Syed’s stone labyrinth is somewhat overgrown but still intact, still a landmark between Hinge Park and the tiny man-made habitat island out in the Creek itself.

Slightly to my own surprise, I don’t as usual carry on to Olympic Village plaza. Instead I cut south through Hinge Park, delighted as always at how much mystery and nature it offers, even though it is very small and bordered by condos.

 

On up to walk along East 1st, between Manitoba and Columbia. I pass the home to the Arts Club Theatre Company (unknown to me until this very moment) — a typical bit of modern glass frontage for a typical pleasant-looking reception area for a performance venue.

And then, it is no longer typical. Well, it is — our new-typical. Mannequins stand in the window display area, each one clad in some kind of essential-worker garb, and bearing this sign.

Into another alley.

No, not an alley-alley. This is a landscaped, highly designed pathway-alley between low-rise condominium structures. Each with its own combination of shrubbery, benches and water features.

I look down at that metal medallion, there at my feet.

“Tread lightly,” it says.

What a good idea, in this stressed world in which we now all live.

Oh, and, Happy Canada Day!

 

 

 

 

 

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12 Comments

  1. Happy Canada Day to you, as well. And thanks for the delightful walk. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply
  2. Oh lovely walk, thank you ๐Ÿ˜Š

    Reply
  3. Happy Canada day…another cool walk…smiles Hedy โ˜บ๏ธโœŒ๏ธ

    Reply
  4. susan Corbin

     /  2 July 2020

    They sit on the rocks, near the water, because they can ….easily…..stand up. We canโ€™t!
    The dog bench looks just like Dougal… s.xo

    Reply
  5. That’s a nice bench – the one of the dog drinking some water. It is always nice to see other people’s walks and partake in them virtually.

    Reply
  6. I like alleys, too, because people aren’t invested in “show” there. There’s a wonderful ordinariness to alleys. I love the way the first photo features those poles (all of them). Love the chair, too, but you could guess that I would. I like the train car wheels as bench sides – in NYC, remnants of train tracks were left in place as part of the design for the High Line, with “blowsy” wildflowers planted between them – it’s a beautiful effect. Why is Hinge Park called that? Spyglass Dock? “Tread Lightly” was a great way to end. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Reply
    • I always meant to visit the High Line while still living east, but didn’t, and regret it. Not likely now, though never-say-never. Can’t explain Hinge Park: Wikipedia (thank you…) says it references a bend in the street grid, where Cambie intersects with W. 2nd, but, literally, I can’t see it. Spyglass Dock? I darkly suspect real-estate cutesiness, but am not sure. Can’t account for “Treat lightly” either, but yes, it’s a great way to end!

      Reply
      • Well, I like the name. And your take on Spyglass made me smile. OK, was that typo intentional? I like that, too. ๐Ÿ™‚

      • eeek, tell me the typo: I can’t find my comment, so can’t reread it for myself — and this request may answer your question: a really-truly typo, not a bit of clever manipulation of language…

  7. yes, just found my earlier comment: “Treat” was a typo — I did mean “Tread”

    Reply
    • Anyway, sometimes treat lightly is a good way to end but other times, like when there’s the possibility of great cake, treat heavily might be better. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Reply

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  • WALKING… & SEEING

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