February 1, 2020

25 years ago, we lived here and the building is still here.

Almost looks like a soviet era commie block but it was actually super new and super modern inside. We lived in a HUGE apartment suite right across a nice field and our school (took 4 minutes to walk to school). Our place was on the upper floors with a pretty view. We only lived here briefly before my parents bought a home only a few blocks away. Incredible memories. This neighbourhood is called The Maples and it’s a middle-class family area of Winnipeg and it was fuckin’ amazing living here. I have nothing but the fondest memories.

Here is Arek’s old house (25+ years ago). Behind that basement window is where I played my first video game.

I was hooked playing Colecovision, we would type our code from magazines on our Commodore 16 (and later) 64 computers and Amigas, play 1000s of games, gobble up junk food and drinks from the nearby Mac’s. Built skateboard jump-ramps and cruise the neighbourhood streets on our BMX bikes then later our fancy cars (my first car was a super nice Audi) listening to 90s music far too loud (this was to attract chicks) and trying to squeal our tires (also to attract chicks).

I have walked through that side door, conservatively speaking, 2500 times.

This is my elementary school. It’s called Elwick.

After moving from Poland we started attendance here within a few days of arrival. This building is where I had taken my English classes (my sister and I actually studied some English in the early 80s in a private school in Poland) and met my very first Canadian friends. As you can imagine the first few months felt like living on a different planet. A 24 hour flight from PL to CAD was a 100 year jump forward in every single sense of the word (we escaped Communism, poverty and Russian oppression).

Some of my fondest memories here, my brain was short circuiting 24/7.

I arrived in Canada 25 years ago and doubt Bulgaria will be close to the quality of life I had on arrival even *25 years from now*. There is still, easily, a 50++ year difference in quality of life, happiness and prosperity between this region (Bulgaria, Romania, Ukraine, Russia, Serbia etc) and the modern Western world. Makes me sad, I want everyone to be happy.

Arek, the dude with whom I grew up with is currently in our old city of Winnipeg, Manitoba….

….or what most people consider the “asshole of Canada”, it is an arrival point for many immigrants (folks from Ukraine (HUGE Ukrainian population here), India, Russia, Philippines etc). We both had a in incredible and fulfilling upbringing here but of course left for the West Coast the moment we were financially and logistically able to. Winnipeg is not a tourist destination by any stretch but there is a lot to visit (great museums and some really nice restaurants) I can’t wait to head back to reminisce for a few summer months, head north to beautiful Whiteshell (the lake district) and explore its many glorious beaches and campsites..and maybe some fishing…….very soon.

We are doing a no beer February/March starting today.

When I visited the spa/fitness center a couple of days ago I jumped on one of those fancy medical scales and after the flashing alarms went off, the needle briskly jumped wayyyy onto the “disgusting range”. I need my beach body for Vietnam and beer guts are fucking gross.

And yes, this means no more beers in the shower or on the beach.