I Love East Van!
What is East Van to me?
I was born and raised in what I now call a Suburb of East Van: I was born and raised in Trail, BC.
If you have never been to Trail, or know no one from Trail, then this may not make any sense to you. However, if you have been to that fine community in the West Kootenay Region of British Columbia, or if you know anyone from Trail; then the comment should make total sense to you.
For me, Trail is just a very small East Van, or East Van is made up of a lot of Trails!!
Trail was and is a small community of mostly new immigrants. Most of it’s people (when I was growing up) were of Italian or English descent. A community of people who left their homelands to strive for a better life in a new country. A community of hard working, predominantly blue collar folk that worked at Cominco or in the businesses that supported the smelter.
East Van is similar. East Van is made up of immigrants trying to make a better life. There are many different ethnic backgrounds in East Van; Italian, German, Chinese, Indian, Philippino, other South East Asians and now many Latino. East Van allows ALL to hang on to their cultural identities and the communities reflect that. East Van is alive with the diversity of culture and lifestyle. East Van never compromises on the qualities that are; East Van.
So what do I think of when I think of, East Van?
East Van is;
Friendly people full of life.
People of ethnic diversity striving to make their mark in Canada
Italian men playing bocce on Victoria and Grant
22nd Ave Fish Market
Italian Cultural Centre
Terminal Avenue Flea Market
Antique Stores on Main Street
Trout Lake Community Centre
Wine making in the Fall
La Grotta Del Formaggio sandwiches
La Piazza – Dario’s
New Brighton Park picnics in the summer
Food, Food, and more Food
St. Jude and St. Mary’s Parishes
Bon’s on Nanaimo
Fig Trees and Tomato Gardens
Columbus Meat Market
Not understanding most of the conversations at the bus stop
Nick’s Spaghetti House
Bosa Foods on Victoria Drive
Watching the fireworks on 4th and Lakewood
Crows – millions of crows
Interesting driving habits
Real Canadian Superstore
My Best Friends
Vancouver Specials – not the ugly new ones but the old ones
And the list goes on and on and on!!
East Van is not just a place to live. It is not just an area of Vancouver.
East Van is an attitude, a way of living, a feeling inside of you, and your identity. It becomes who you are and what you believe in. It is reflected in how you conduct yourself in business and everyday situations. East Van is all of the descriptives above and East Van is also a multitude of intangibles that I could never properly describe in writing. The best way to describe East Van is in conversation at coffee shop or restaurant on the Drive!
In the end – I can honestly say – I Love East Van!!