I’ve been downtown before during my previous trips to Vancouver, but I always stayed around Robson and Denman. So when I had to go to ICBC near Burrard station, I thought I would be able to find my way.
After taking a pretty picture of the outside of Burrard Station
(very pretty urban park, I love those), I set out to find the fabled ICBC office.
Dear readers, if you know me at all you know that I pride myself on my sense of orientation. I always know where I am and where I am going, where is north and where is east.
Not this time. Because of the skyscrapers, I could not find the mountains to the north. Because of the random hills everywhere, I could not orient myself through ascent or descent.
I must have looked like a silly tourist as I was clutching my iPhone, desperately trying to figure out which direction to walk into to meet the point on the map where the ICBC web site told me their office was.
In the end, I didn’t even have to go outside: the office was in the Royal Place Mall (or something), which I could have accessed by the Burrard station. But then, I wouldn’t have seen the pretty park. Serendipity.
A half hour later, as I confidently walked east towards Richards and Gastown (a section of the city I know much better) and my meeting with Raul of Hummingbird604.com, I realized that I was born to live in this city. That no matter what it throws at me, I will always find my way.
Bring it on, Vancouver. I’m ready!