One year later: I’m glad I moved to Mexico and left Vancouver behind
For the vast majority of my readers, and particularly those who live in Vancouver, saying what I just posted as the title of my blog entry would be heresy. After all, I was for all practical purposes, one of THE pre-eminent Vancouver social media darlings. I have written about Vancouver, British Columbia and Canada for more than six years. And then I moved. I packed my belongings and moved to Mexico, to be closer to my (aging) parents.
Everyone who is in some way or another close to me always asks me “are you sure you made the right move?“. And my answer, one year later, is still emphatically YES. I’m glad I moved to Mexico, and I’m glad I left Vancouver behind. You’ll see: I left behind a group of very lovely friends, and someone I loved very much and with whom I shared many, many years. I moved away from one of the cities I have loved the most (I lived for more than a decade in Vancouver), a gorgeous, exciting and vibrant city. I left behind a position that was highly glamorous and socially popular as the socialite editor-in-chief of Hummingbird604.com
At the same time, I also left behind a number of things that were negative about Vancouver that I did not like, and that I put up with as part-and-parcel of living in one of the most beautiful cities in the world, surrounded by stunning natural beauty.
I left behind the snarky online fights of some members of the Vancouver’s social media scene. Yes, even with my personality (which is for the most part, gregarious, open, and always honest), there was always someone who disliked me, and always someone who would not like how I participated in the online realm. I have not received negative comments on my blog in months, nor have I been the subject of online attacks. Why not? I have a hypothesis: I’m no longer the competition. With one of the top Vancouver bloggers out, the field becomes less competitive (becomes more competitive among the ones who stay, of course, but I’m no longer a competitor nor am I on the same market).
I left behind incredibly expensive real estate. Of course, I loved my shoebox one-bedroom apartment in Mount Pleasant, and I miss it terribly. But I also left behind having to commute everywhere by bus, and getting soaked wet or snowed in. I have a three-bedroom, 2 stories house with a yard and a back terrace here. And I pay $50 Canadian dollars LESS than I did for my shoebox in Vancouver.
Of course, with leaving the bad behind, comes also leaving the good behind. I miss the forests and the beaches. I’m someone who needs to be close to nature all the time, and the cities where I spend most of my time in Mexico are incredibly urban with a very low green-area-to-inhabitant ratio. Water is scarce in central Mexico, whereas it is abundant in Vancouver.
I left behind a number of amazing friends and some of the best collaborations I’ve experienced, including my book co-author (Arieanna Schweber and her family), the co-founders of The Network Hub (Jay, John and Minna), and of course my Vancouver-based friends I met online and then became my offline friends (Airdrie Miller, Isabella Mori, MJ Ankenman, Kimberly Bowie, Gus Fosarolli and Russ Benger, Jordan and Alex Behan, Cassandra Anderton, Monique Sherrett, Ava Naves, Mark Robins and David Hannigan, just to mention a few of them – there’s still a tonne of close friends of mine I left behind in Vancouver, and the list would be incredibly long to mention them all here – you know I love you all).
But the truth is: I made the right choice. Living in Vancouver was a choice, and one that I made having JT as one, if not THE, primary reason why I stayed. But my priorities changed as my parents got older, and I had to make a decision, and I’m perfectly happy and content with the one I made. IT WAS THE RIGHT ONE. Living in Mexico is also a choice and one I’m very happy I made. I’ve had friends of mine come and visit me and spend time with me here, and I think that on closer look, they can see why I love being here so much.
Yes, I miss Vancouver. And yes, I loved every minute of my life I lived there. But I love my life here, and I have absolutely no complaints at all. Professionally and personally, this was the best decision I could have made. Sometimes I wish I had made it earlier, but everything comes in due time. But I’ll be back in Vancouver some day. I just don’t think I’ll ever move back. But as they say, never say never!
- “Are you happy you moved?” My response to this often-asked question
- Cafe Azul y Oro (Mexico City, Mexico) #MexMonday
- Yes, Vancouver, I have moved.
- Your dose of lunacy: No left turn where you should do a left turn
- What is left unsaid often hurts