Overlooking much of central Winnipeg is the statue of Eternal Youth, holding his beacon of light above the city to remind us that age is just a number and we can remain young at heart. It’s almost a paradox after the harsh Winter we faced in Winnipeg this year, that Eternal Youth is often said to be granted to the inhabitants of Paradise. It does however seem that with the arrival of June, the summer is at last approaching, the trees have suddenly erupted with luscious green and beautiful pink flowers are blooming. Perhaps there is a touch of Paradise in Winnipeg after-all!
That said, I have never hidden the fact that I do not love Winnipeg. I can see why it might capture the hearts of some but for me it could never be more than just a friendly acquaintance. The thought of spending an eternity here is certainly unimaginable and at one time I would have said unbearable. As the months have turned into years since I arrived in Manitoba, I can’t help but wonder if Winnipeg has some kind of spell that keeps people here. I have met many immigrants who came for a short-time and have stayed for almost a decade already.
Throughout the cold Winter months, I had felt that there was nobody my age still young, free and single, with an appetite for getting out and about in the city. It seemed as though everybody wanted to rush home and curl up in front of the TV every night and that making weekend plans was at best flaky and often impossible. With the arrival of Spring and the completion of my dissertation it was as though the city granted us all a new lease of life and I have finally met some wonderful people who I am lucky to call my friends.
So, right now, I am waiting for my partner in crime to get her butt back from Montreal so we can paint the town red together, with the friends we affectionately call “the kids” because in Winnipeg it seems we might just be the last ones over 25 still clubbing but who cares? You’re only as old as you feel.