Summer in Vancouver is not the summer I used to know

Summer in Rome was the summer of pretty much all my life, until last year.

It was my summer as a child when, after the school was over, I used to leave Rome for the coast nearby, moments of pure freedom that became symbols of a distant time, mythologized in childhood memories.

It was my summer as a student and, later, as an adult, sultry, slow and (too) boring, weighed down by a sense of emptiness until September, when life “could start again.”
And so, while Rome was steeped in a so hot air we couldn’t breathe (and that made me intolerant to everything), the summer months used to pass between the usual days in the city, and those (few) days we could cut out for us, moments of suspended time, made of the waves sound and the chirping of cicadas.

Summer in Rome could be lived only at night, looking for the “fresco” in the streets finally empty, or (thinking of going) elsewhere.

Then, came the Canadian summer…


The summer here is not the noise of the cicadas,
is not the pasta with clams I used to eat as a child,
is not the heat that pushes you to the ground, is not the 2 pm stillness ,
is not the ice cream in front of St. Peterby night ,
is not getting up at dawn to go to the sea,
is not the beach always full of umbrellas,
is not three months of holiday, vacation, nothing.

Summer in Vancouver is not the summer I used to know.

It’s a season when the city shines (more), the sun is hot and the wind is cool.

The summer here is
(keep) going to work with light clothes (and a sweater for the AC),
the BBQ smell, picnics at the park, lake trips, weekends into the woods, (very) long walks,
the city beaches overlooking the mountains and framed by trees,
grass under bare feet, cold water in which try to jump,
downtown bustling with people and voices from around the world,
running under the trees while children play baseball,
fireworks so enormous to illuminate the entire night sky,
the sun sinking below the horizon at 10 pm, the pinkiest sunsets,
and then at night, along the seawall, watching the city lights reflected on the water.


All the photos here: Summer in Vancouver