Our dear friend Lynda lives in the Interior these days. It has been almost two years since we last spoke; hard to believe, hard to fathom such an interval. She called tonight and it was a true delight as the months melted away in stories and laughter.
Rushing between meetings today, with a slight but pleasant dampness in the air, I managed to complete my walk on the Drive.
There seem to be fewer vacancies this month as storefronts get taken up — some quicker than others. 2120 Commercial, for example, will open soon as JQ Clothing (what used to be Jean Queen at 2227). The building used to be a horrible brown colour but has now been remade in a shocking pink!
And 2055 Commercial, finally, looks as if the UPS store will open in a day or two. The interior has been fitted out with post boxes etc. At the same time, 1395 is vacant but some work seems to be happening. and Stanley Nail Spa will soon open at 1181, where Spank Shies used to be.
Unfortunately, 1840, 1344, 1268 and 1102 are still vacant and not looking wonderful.
One very new shop is at the front entrance to Il Mercato Mall. It is Lombardo’s 2 Go and is beautifully decorated like a European bistro, with the clerks in pleasant uniforms. They are selling pizzas, salads and sandwiches.
The only other changes I noticed were to two very well-established businesses. The Abruzzo Cafe, where men pack the rooms and spill out onto the sidewalk whenever there is a soccer game, has undergone a change of ownership. Opened in the early 1970s, this has been a mainstay of the Drive. Unfortunately, I understand the owner is quite unwell and has sold the business.
Just along the street, the chiropractic business that was founded by Nels Beaton in 1951, and which was continued by his son, Keith, now has a new shingle — Beaton & Jager. I hope it succeeds for a lot more decades.
And that was that, and a grand walk it was.
Previous Changes on the Drive articles
I’m sure I am exaggerating, but it seems like I have been in a hundred meetings over the last couple of weeks — GWAC, Coalition of Vancouver Neighbourhoods, history, etc.
I have thoroughly enjoyed nearly all of them, but they sure don’t allow time for me to write posts here. I am sad for that, and will try to do better, because there is so much of interest going on (I could write a dozen posts on Rob Ford, and another dozen on the Senate — thank goodness you have been spared those!)
In between two meetings today, I did manage to do my monthly walk on the Drive, so that post will be up soon.
“The wild gander leads his flock through the cool night,
Ya-honk! he says, and sounds it down to me like an invitation:
The pert may suppose it meaningless, but I listen closer,
I find its purpose and place up there toward the November sky.”
— Walt Whitman