When our bus was heading in to Sault Ste. Marie, the sign said “Welcome to Sault Ste. Marie, home to Canada’s first female astronaut Dr. Roberta Bodnar.” I wondered what ours would say. It went something like this.
“Welcome to Vancouver, home to Dr.’s Jean and Allister Carruthers, chief promoters of Botox; also the home of the highest population of people infected with HIV in the western world whose population is primarily concentrated in V6A, one of Canada’s poorest postal codes where you can buy a home for a million dollars. In this same postal code resides Canada’s first legal safe injection site, stores where you can buy fleece jackets for your dogs, North America’s largest open drug scene, hundreds of murdered and missing women, thousands of deaths by overdose and Bryan Adams Warehouse Studios, one of the finest recording studios in the Country. We are also home to the Greenpeace movement and the David Suzuki Foundation. Vancouver is also home to one of the world’s richest men Jimmy Pattison, a haven for the stars, everyone has a place here from Leonard Cohen to Oprah and of course there is Vancouver born crooner Michael Buble, oh yeah he’s from Burnaby. There’s always Chip Wilson, founder of Lululemon, he is true blue Vancouver, white, money and benevolent, but then so is Jimmy Pattison, who gave a million dollars to restore what some people call his driveway, Stanley Park. Stanley Park, the jewel of Vancouver, the tears, the pain, the shock, when thousands of trees came down, 26 gruesome murders of women, and barely a whisper. Also Canada’s most addicted City and breathtakingly naturally beautiful. Oh yeah, one more thing, future home of the unnatural disaster which is the 2010 Winter Olympics.”
Or we could just have a simple sign, that said “Welcome to Vancouver a sea of contradictions and tragic ironies, anything is possible here, really!”