“There are no wolves in Africa.”

Yup, you learned it here.

I did not go to Africa. instead, I returned to the mainland for a Scrabble rematch. For more than two months, I carried the shame of finishing last against Marianne and Shannon. It’s a strong possibility this is the reason I have hardly blogged since my last visit to the mainland. I’m beyond a sore loser.

Two hours of laying down tiles and intersecting words resulted in this:

See “ENEMAS”? I played that one. Nix was also mine. Marianne resisted challenging that one as her first thought was, “As in, the lice shampoo?”

Yes, a popular lice shampoo is an official Scrabble word! In this instance, it means veto. As in, refuse to accept or allow, which is how I feel about the final score.

UNACCEPTABLE!

I lost! Again!

It appears that I’ll have to return for a re-rematch. Or learn a new game that Marianne doesn’t play. Bananagrams? Maybe I should get into arm-wrestling: I’m more brawny than brainy these days.

Shannon, who witnessed my game of shame last year, wasn’t present this time, but we met up at the climbing gym formerly known as Cliffhanger. It’d been about six years since I last pulled on plastic there. They’re now called The Hive Heights, but they still have my 25-year-old mugshot on file:

Look at how excited I am!

My initial reaction upon entering the building was, “It’s smaller than I remember.” I guess I’d gotten used to the colossuses that were Montréal’s climbing gyms. Not to detract from the nostalgia of being back in Vancouver, but Montréal came to mind more than once. Since moving away in 2015, Vancouver stepped up their mural game. In fact, the first annual Vancouver Mural Festival was held the year following my departure:

Glow-up!

I wish I had a before photo of this place (Hootsuite’s HQ, I believe). Of course, I don’t because it was unremarkable in the first place.

Much like this building, “A lot going on” is my aesthetic. I had to add that by taking a side trip to Burnaby to get this scratched on me:

Flower butt.

It’s a James Jean sketch with colour. It’s a character tucked into a tulip and has no deep meaning to me. It sure is cute, though.

I had my obligatory hair appointment with Martin. I was tempted to get bangs again after finding my climbing gym pass as I’d gotten a little bored with my hair. Then I was like, wait a minute: my hair is yellow. Boring is the second-last word one would use to describe my hair (the last being “healthy”).

Another must-do in Vancouver is to adopt a daily diet of donuts. Even when I couldn’t make it to one of the gourmet donuteries, I got my fix at a 7 Eleven. I’m more cookie-oriented when in Victoria.

I saw some must-see people such as my opa and Zoée. Opa re-gifted me a box of Speculoos (Dutch cookies), which I then re-regifted to my paramour, who hasn’t quite made it on my list of must-see Vancouverites but is getting there. I know to mention this at all is titillating: that’s the point! This is why you need to check out my blog regularly: to find out whether the box of speculoos has been re-re-regifted!

Zoée is a joy to be around. They participate very well by asking and answering questions. And one of the perks of staying at their place is being able to freely stomp around like a Clydesdale (Seinfeld reference FTW) because the person living in the suite below Zoée’s is also deaf. Thus, we tried our hand at voguing in their living room.

Like this, but not good.

On March 1st, I will need to learn to sidle again as I will be living with someone who, as far as I know, has perfect hearing. More on that another day.

My trip concluded with a relic from Montréal, Nic. The dates of my trip coincided with his plans to ski in Revelstoke. Therefore, he found himself obligated to let me fill the passenger seat of his car. It was Nic who overheard the title of this blog post coming from the lady who ran the African Carvings kiosk in Tsawwassen Quay Market. Essentially, the lady missed out on a profit because Africa does not have wolves, and wolves are what people with money to blow on art while waiting for their ferry demand!

So, yeah, this trip had it all…except for wolves.

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