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Why Vancouver? Why You?

Thank you to all entrants. Please visit the semifinalist page to view the top ten essays as determined by our panel and the public voting. Click here to view the top ten

The City at the End of the Road

By Fernando Villasmil Barbera

I moved here almost a year ago pursuing something that, and I think it’s safe to say, everybody wants. A better life chasing your dreams. Mine is writing for any screen and so I found myself attending VFS. It wasn’t easy getting here but at last I made it, and it has been the adventure of a lifetime. This past year has been a year of firsts: first time living completely on my own (actually with a roommate but you know what I mean); first time I saw, stepped on, and touched snow; first time shooting a movie. I really can’t complain, it has being great.

But this would have entirely different had it happened in another city. Vancouver is special that way. There is just something in the air that makes it better somehow. I always find myself smiling when I catch the smell of salt water randomly in the streets and I remind myself that we’re that close to the ocean.

But the city has way more to offer than the obvious tourist sights. In fact, I think one of the things I’ve enjoyed the most has been the walk to and from school. Those neighborhood streets between Strathcona and Chinatown are really something else. Getting to know the houses and imagine the endless stories to which they have been witness is an activity I sincerely recommend. Seeing those old houses (some of them are still even from the turn of the century) next to the bristling Chinese market really makes the mind wonder.

That’s what the city has been really for me. A place to dream and to wonder. It gives me hope for the future that I could have, living here in a more permanent condition and it makes me glad to have had the chance to share this place with so many interesting places and people.

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