Tagged with " surrey"
Feb 4, 2009 -

Living in a Gangsta’s Paradise

Since moving to Surrey, there has been almost daily news about new gang-related violence and mayhem and more murders than I am accustomed to hearing about in a whole year!

I was warned before moving here that Surrey is renown for its crime rate. As I expected, the violence is pretty much localized to a particular part of town. I am glad that I made the decision to remain in the southernmost part of Surrey and do not believe I would feel quite as safe in a ‘mid-town’ RV park such as Peace Arch, but I don’t feel threatened. That said, I am very aware of where I travel and at what time, and I have to confess that one of the reasons why I’ve decided to stop taking public transit is that the Skytrain Station is located in gangland and waiting for a bus in the dark made me nervous. Petty crime is also a major problem all through the GVR, so I am doubly cautious when parking the car, taking the GPS with me and leaving the trunk cover (I have a hatchback) open to make it obvious that I’m not trying to ‘hide’ anything. A BC politician recently stashed all her personal gear (passport, Blackberry, wallet, etc.) in her trunk and lost it all, so I’m not being overly cautious!

What is sad is to listen to how hopeless people feel about the violence in their city. Neighbouring Abbotsford is facing a similar challenge the police have admitted their powerlessness to deal with this growing problem. There is also the concern that the perpetrators are getting younger and younger. A boy of 13 was arrested this week after stabbing a man on the Skytrain!

Despite all of this, I am getting less and less timid about this place that scared me so much. The next nice weekend (definitely not this one 🙁 ), I am going to downtown Vancouver! I’ll just make sure I stay on the west side of Hastings!

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British Columbia, Canada, Personal, Scary Stuff, Travel    11 Comments
Jan 9, 2009 -

Like March, Only Wetter

We were treated to brilliant sunshine and BLUE sky  yesterday afternoon and this morning I was awoken by SUN. It doesn’t last, though. It’s started to rain again, but the weather is sooooo mild. It’s such a joy to be able to dash out to the laundry in just a sweater and slippers instead of having to throw on a heavy coat and boots!

Some parts of Surrey and the Fraser Valley are severely flooded right now, but I’m still safe and relatively dry where I am. I don’t see water pooling anywhere in the park. I am keeping watch on conditions in case there are evacuations, but it seems like this is a good place to ride out the inclement weather.

A lot of roads into this area are closed because of avalanche risks, including the road I took from Oliver. I really got out of there in the nick of time!

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British Columbia, Canada, Travel, Weather    1 Comment
Jan 6, 2009 -

Waiting for the Locusts

British Columbia’s southwest mainland (where I am) is now under flood warning thanks to all that wonderful rain we’re getting that is melting all that lovely snow. The province hasn’t had it easy the last few years thanks to forest fires and now here we are with flood warnings.

The last few days have brought back lovely memories of my time spent in the Scottish Highlands. Until now, there was the only place I ever saw mist and fog so thick as to completely block out the sky. Oh, I’ve lived in the Gatineau hills and made mention of pea soup fog along my journeys, but this sort of fog is a breed unto itself. The sky seems heavy and 1PM looks like 9PM, it’s so dark out. The Scots call this weather ‘atmosphere’ and that’s entirely appropriate! Like those days back in June of ’98 in a stony croft in Glen Nevis, I just want to wrap myself in a wool plaid by a hot fire! Of course, a bathing suit and hot tub are going to have to substitute. 😀

I’m finding it more difficult to find a comfortable ambient temperature inside Miranda in this sort of weather than I did in dry cold. It’s damp and I’m heating with propane, which pretty much makes the problem worse. I don’t have a 15A outlet on my pedestal here, so running a space heater is out of the question. But this is truly a petty concern; it’s not cold, just chilly, and, again, I have a hot tub to run to when my fingers stop working. Okay, enough with the amenities already! 🙂

I’m definitely settling in here, having found the shortest route to the nearest Walmart. 🙂 Thursday afternoon, I have an interview with an employment agency here in Surrey; this is great news! I spoke with another agency yesterday but doubt that anything will come of that conversation. The lady had a hard time believing that I am allowed to take temporary employment during my sabbatical, much less that I left on good terms and that my supervisor is available for a reference!

Going back to Walmart for a second, the south Surrey Walmart is the hugest Walmart I have ever seen!!! It rivals any American ‘super’ Walmart I have ever seen! It even has a complete grocery section that rivals any grocery store I’ve seen in months (for one thing, it stocks halva!). After the absolutely ridiculous grocery store prices in Oliver and environs, I’m going a tad nuts with my stocking up!

Well, I have a a lasagna to assemble and laps to swim and rain to listen to (love that sound on the roof) and interview clothes to assemble, so off I go. It sure feels nice to not be miserable anymore. 🙂

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British Columbia, Campgrounds, Canada, Finances, Shopping, Travel, Weather, Work    2 Comments