We’ve been back in Vancouver for about six weeks now and it’s astonishing how much we’ve accomplished. Lots of the little details of life like dental check-ups and cleaning, check-ups with our various doctors, talks with our financial manager and tax accountant, beginning the planning of our next trip, cementing the dates and buying our airline tickets. Before he retired Don’s business was all medical-legal work so it’s hard for him to completely walk away since not all cases he was involved with have settled. During the second week back he actually had to go to court to give expert witness testimony requiring quite a lot of time in prep work to get up to speed, and I completely built a new blog – a whole new learning curve that involved, among other things the resizing of every photo from the beginning of time. We’ve managed to catch up with some of our friends though not all, and plan to make that a priority for July and August before we leave again in September.
In some ways the biggest news is the change in our situation with regard to medical insurance. To be eligible for medical coverage in British Colombia you must be resident here for six months of every year which we will not be this year, for the first time. In order to purchase travel medical insurance you must have BC medical coverage. What to do? With the help of our insurance agent we discovered we can retain our medical coverage in BC for a full twenty-four months while on extended travel, with the stipulation that we can return to BC as many times as we like in that twenty-four months, but each time we must stay for less than thirty days. Our twenty-four months begins when we leave in September. We’ll return briefly in March and then we’ll be off again. So we’ll become nomads even more. This is another cutting of the ties to our old way of life. We’re really starting to feel more and more “homeless”, even though we are still residents of Canada, and BC. There are other matters that once resolved will leave us with even fewer ties here, apart from our friends of course, so that we can become more and more free floating, moving wherever the Mystery takes us, wherever we are inspired to go. Our life becomes more and more about exploring the world. And about exploring ourselves, and each other, through travel and through experiencing the infinite variety of ways in which others live. It’s exciting and stimulating, and we are far from done. Actually it feels more like we’re just beginning.
So the next trip? First we go back to Canberra, Australia for about six weeks. For five of those weeks we will be house sitting for friends while they visit Canada, and writing. In late October we fly to Delhi. We are going back to India. We wish to discover a different India from Tiruvannamalai. We were inspired by, among other things, the movie “The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel” which I highly recommend.
With Julie and Robbie (my sister and brother-in-law) we will explore Delhi, Jaipur, Jodpur, Pushkar for its Camel Fair, Agra and Varanasi. Then Don and I will head to Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, maybe back to Vietnam, and hopefully Myanmar. Back to Vancouver mid March and then . . . . . nothing firmed up yet, we have some ideas, definitely somewhere hot.
The first five weeks back in Vancouver we were house sitting for friends, and they graciously allowed us to use their car during that time. Thank you Michael and Ricki! Don made a booking for a rental car for when they returned. We cancelled that when another friend offered us the use of his car. It’s up for sale but we can drive it until it sells. We are travelling in style these days driving a BMW. We are blessed indeed. Thank you David!
Recently we had a day out with our granddaughter. It has been so wonderful to be able to see her again after such a long time away. We had lunch at “Go Fish” which is a Vancouver institution – a little eatery down by the water near Granville Island that serves, among other things, fabulous fish and chips. We followed lunch with a lot of photography. Amanda and I had the best time taking photos of just about anything and everything.
Vancouver on a typically cool cloudy summer’s day – all photos were taken on, or near Granville Island, which isn’t an island at all, though I believe it may have been once upon a time, way back when:
“Go Fish” is right next to this wharf
and here’s one of the public fish for sale
Love this guy’s pants
Looking through the fishing boats towards Burrard Bridge
Lunchtime on Granville Island
Look what we found hiding under the docks – a blue heron
and look what we found hiding among the trees – a grumpy totem
The odd couple
Looking across False Creek towards Yaletown
All words and images by Alison Louise Armstrong unless otherwise noted.
© Alison Louise Armstrong and Adventures in Wonderland – a pilgrimage of the heart, 2010-2015.