Happy New Year!
We have now been living in downtown Vancouver for just over two years and after having lived in Kamloops, Salmon Arm and Whistler (previous to our childhood lives in Winnipeg), Vancouver is where we hope to stay. We enjoy all that downtown has to offer and hope to continue blogging about ‘Golf and Life in Vancouver’ for many years to come. Over the last year we have encountered some great people in our daily interactions that we would like to thank for taking care of us in 2009 (sorry for those we left out, there are to many to mention).

We chose our building – Bayview at Coal Harbour – in a hurry and kind of by chance but it has turned out to be a great place to live. It is managed by Gateway Properties but it is our resident managers, Dan and Jelina, and our concierge and staff team, Slobodan, Yuri, Andrey, Genevieve and Diyana that make the difference. They make running a business from home and just living here a pleasure. We would also like to thank Louie and the rest of the staff at 7-11 (Cardero & Robson) for keeping us Winnipegers in Slurpees almost every day, all year long. Their friendliness is not what you would expect, or what we expected, from a 7-11. And of course there is Sara at Niloo Hair Salon (Nicola Street) who takes care of both of us and even managed to get Tara to cut her hair shorter. We cannot forget Patsy at Harmonie Day Spa (Robson Street), Mary at Shoppers Drug Mart (W Pender) and the staffs of the Coal Harbour Liquor Store and Coal Harbor Cleaners.

The Polar Bear Swim
We would also like to mention that although we did not participate we did get out to watch the Polar Bear swim in English Bay on January 1st. The Vancouver Polar Bear Swim Club is one of the largest and oldest Polar Bear Clubs in the world. The first New Year’s swim was in 1920. On Friday the swim took place at 2:30 pm on the first day of each new year. There is a contest for best costume as well as a 100 yard swim race in honor of Peter Pantages. This year it appeared that between 20,000 & 60,000 people (depending if you ask Tara or Jeff) turned out to watch or participate.  It was about 7 degrees celsius outside and at a one point it was raining sideways so hard that the umbrella barely made a difference.  The swim itself was interesting to watch, having never been before, as “the swimmers” came to the beach stripped down to their swimsuits, ran into the water for about 1 minute, ran back out and stood shivering under their towels.  However, those that did go into the water appeared to have alot of fun.  Who knows, we may have to give it a try next year?

Kudos to all of the swimmers and to everyone who helped make 2009 a great year! All the best in 2010!