I’m heading south in a few minutes. I stayed about 3 extra days in Vancouver, it’s such a wonderful city. Here are a few discoveries:
• Kintaro Ramen. Japanese soup kitchen on the 700 block of Denman. The place was packed. Great soup on a cold day.
• The 1100 block of Davie is full of little restaurants, a lot like the upper West Side in NYC. I had good Vietnamese soup at Pho Central. I was sitting at a table in the window and a guy came in from the street and said, “I saw you on TV Monday…” The Dish is another cool little restaurant. There’s a Greek restaurant that had a line out in the street.
• Daryl’s Native Arts and Coffee, 945 Davie, has a few really nice First Nations art pieces, good coffee, and the below wooden figure out front with a sign saying “The cigar store Indian ‘Elijah’ has been replaced by this cigar store white man, General Custer. It’s payback time.”
Spirit Wrestler Gallery
Above: Raven and whale bentwood box by Douglas Zilkle at https://www.spiritwrestler.com/
I wandered in to this gallery in Gastown on Sunday and was stunned. I was surrounded by objects of great beauty. This gallery carries museum-quality artwork created by (alive) native people, of 3 cultures: the First Nations of the Pacific Northwest Coast, the Inuit of the Canadian Arctic and the Maori of Aotearoa (New Zealand). I bought a jade crossover pendant made by a young man (Tamaora Walker) of the Te Arawa tribe (one of seven Maori groups of indigenous peoples), and I think I’ll wear it the rest of my life. For me, a place like this, with their focus, is better than museums which tend to overwhelm me.
I had a long conversation with Nigel Reading, one of the owners. When I left, I told him that being around these beautiful objects “…made my heart sing,” like, I said, you know,.the ’60s song “Wild Thing.” He said, “Yeah, wasn’t that the Troggs..?”
I’ve been telling all the Canadians I know to check this gallery out. It’s at 47 Water Street in Gastown.