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10 years, mostly in North Van

10 years, mostly in North Van

Old Jul 3rd 2019, 9:42 am
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Talking 10 years, mostly in North Van

Today, ten years ago, I stepped off the plane in Vancouver. I was coming up from Dallas as I'd done a Round the World trip, so in effect I came Eastwards from the UK. I just had the bag from that trip and a backpack, that's it. 3 weeks in a hostel until I found a flatmate who didn't mind that I didn't have a job and was on the Working Holiday visa (what became IEC, forget the name then). I also found a job which had agreed to sign & complete the BC PNP Paperwork if I filled it out and did the vast majority of the work (btw, that is the best way to do it). I slept on Canadian Tire air mattresses for now.

That flat share lasted until the following April when I moved to 1br apartment in North Vancouver, which would become my home. From my one bag above, I now also had about 10 ikea bags and some skis, but I could still move in a taxi. That was my first time actually living on my own (oh I'd lived independently for years, but always had housemates because I was in Uni, in Whistler or in London (UK), this time I was truly solo). Time to buy a proper bed from IKEA. Shortly after that I bought a car which I still have to this day. Although a hobby before, I was hiking a LOT. Did the Juan de Fuca trail and all of Garibaldi PP. If this is your thing, buy snowshoes. I'm an avid skier but love them for a winter hike. Hiking was also a great way to sure up friendships I found.

Anyway, go forward a couple of years get PR. Still remember fistpumping as I drove away from the border with it in hand. I knew then that more likely than not I could stay forever. No more worrying something would expire or it would all come crashing down around me. By that point it was necessary to move on from the job in order to grow. Unfortunately I made a mistake and worked for a large public sector organisation that had over-recruited me. I made it 4 months, using it as a lifeboat until I got a better offer. Off I went pretty quick to that.

Settled in the new job, I was travelling a lot (Mississauga, Calgary etc). 3 months in I flew back from a longer trip to the States and friends asked me to go to a "British" pub. Little did I know that it was the start of the night that I'd get together with the girl that would become my fiancee. I already knew her but it all kicked off then. She moved in about 18 months later.

About 2 years after that we are buying our first home. We found a condo, heartbreakingly we lost out on the first offer, but then that deal fell through so we had a chance to offer again... and it was accepted! I'm writing this in that very condo. Remember the travelling bag and then later the 10 ikea bags + skis I added to it? Now we needed a rented moving truck. Damn thing was huge!

A year after that, I'm dropping to a knee with a ring in Italy. Engaged!

A further year after that, we're surprising our parents with news that we were expecting. Our daughter was born in early 2018. She's a toddler now and has us chasing her around.

So, since everyone else does them:

Like:
  • The outdoors - the culture values them so much here. Camping, Skiing, Snowshoeing, Biking etc.
  • Great food - especially sushi.
  • Generally a better attitude from everyone. Granted there are exceptions, but I honestly do think that people are friendlier here.
  • Huge friend group that me and my fiancee share
  • Snow - YES I LIKE GETTING SNOW and clearly defined weather. Constant drizzle brings me down. I'd rather have snow.
Dislike:
  • Cost of living in Vancouver - wider topic I admit and not isolated to Vancouver. Daycare is especially punishing at the moment
  • Mobile costs - The UK looks amazing compared to the plans here. I find myself less and less wanting a phone at all now.
  • The number of ads on TV - although this is compensated by not having cable TV. When I do see it, I wonder why anyone pays $100/mo for it. I use Netflix and Amazon Prime mostly now.
I don't find myself missing the UK. I certainly enjoy some things when I am there and will seek out British (Dutch) HP sauce when I'm here. But anything I truly want I can now cook or simply find. I do miss friends in the UK but the way I see it is that true friends remain so even if you don't see them for years. I wouldn't mind some things from the UK coming over here (e.g. a real pub) but do I miss this stuff? No.

It's in no small part thanks to BE that I figured out exactly how to do this move. Thanks again for all the help.
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Old Jul 3rd 2019, 10:33 am
  #2  
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Default Re: 10 years, mostly in North Van

Congratulations on your marriage and the impending birth of your first child.

Thank you for taking the time and trouble to update us.
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Old Jul 3rd 2019, 12:00 pm
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Default Re: 10 years, mostly in North Van

As above, congratulations, and thanks for a good read.
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Old Jul 3rd 2019, 12:12 pm
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Default Re: 10 years, mostly in North Van

Congrats. You conquered Vancouver!
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Old Jul 3rd 2019, 2:39 pm
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Default Re: 10 years, mostly in North Van

Congratulations.

What a great story.
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