Wednesday, August 26, 2009


I love Granville Island. I first came here as a summertime hippie wanna be travelling across Canada by thumb. Next I encountered it as a hip yuppie enjoying the Pelvic Bay nightlife. Then I became the mariner. Granville Island would be the place where I did my first sailing lessons at Cooper's Yachts. Then I'd have my 40 foot steel offshore yacht up on the hard bottom painting it for the next year of sailing. When I lived on my boat at the commercial fishing docks I'd dinghy over to Granville Island for the fabulous market. What a treat it was to have fresh meats, vegetables and fruits from the primo marketplace in Vancouver. Always there'd be musicians and art shows going on. Emily Carr College was up the street. I learned scuba diving at Rowand's. The bookstores were terrific. Everything nautical and always the fine dining restaurants with a real mix of day people. I loved getting a live crab or lobster and taking it back to my boat for an evening feast. I played alot of music back then and musicians came by in the evening for dinners. Then Granville Island was the place I went to see Theatresports and enjoy the Granville Island Theatre. Now I've been going back to eat at Cats Social House on their patio. Burgers, salads, calamari, chicken dishes. It's just the great Granville Island atmosphere. With out of town guests I took the little water ferry from West End to the Granville Island docks. The Wooden Boat Festival was on so we could walk along the docks and look at the polished shining variety from Master Steamer to a Viking long boat replica. It was this same dock that I left from for my sailing trips for Mexico, for California, for the Charlotte's and for Hawaii. The last night in Vancouver had to be at Granville Island. Here I was again enjoying all the nostalgia. My 26 year old nephew and his friend, great guys, back from doing the Grouse Grind and bicycling round the seawall for fun. Now I was walking them down memory lane pointing to all the little shops and places that make Granville Island unique and truly appealing. This is where the artisans really show their latest wares. And finally dinner at Cats Social House. Beautiful young waitresses, laid back neighbourhood pub restaurant atmosphere, quiet in the heart of a cosmopolitan city. Water all around. Granville Island between the two bridges of Granville and Burrard. A duck pond behind Cats. The guys even had Granville Island lagers brewed next door. The exotic Asian Caucasian waitress talked about marine biology. We discussed Canadian bilingualism and the changing face of Canada as the next generation of immigrants come of age. Seeing my nephew I'm reminded of my big brother, his father. We were once young too. Now we're older. It was a really social evening and again I liked Cats. Kind of place that makes for easy conversation. Great food too. We walked back to the water ferry. Now the guys are off to the Cellar night club where the young waitress told them a bikini contest was taking place tonight. I'm off to bed. It's been a long time since I was interested in anything the other side of Midnight. It's even weirder that I knew this young intelligent accomplished man when he was a baby.

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