This year will mark Ryan and my 10-year anniversary. I thought I’d post some photos of each year before I forget. This blog has certainly helped, I’ve had it for 6 years now, unbelievable! Here is 2006-2011 for now.
In 2006 I met Ryan on a dragon boat team. We practiced, raced and went to Whistler with the team that year. Later on, he went to the Cayman Islands for 3 months to see if he could live there effectively leaving me for the Cayman Islands right at the start of our relationship. I went down to visit him for a few days during that time. And of course, I managed to rope him back to Canada, but little did I know this would be a recurring theme in our lives. At the end of 2006 when he returned from Cayman, I had effectively moved into his apartment and had my seat settings in his car. As Ryan explains it “she basically left her stuff at my place and never left”. We flew to London and Paris for Christmas and New Years.
In 2007 we began domesticating, ie. I began to fill his sad looking shelf-stable-bagels-and-nothing-else cupboards with proper food. We travelled to the Okanagan winery with our dragon boat team and also went to Hong Kong (with a side trip to Macau) for two weeks in the blistering August heat.
We began 2008 by visiting Laguna Beach in Orange County. I fell in love with the place and we would continue to go back many times in the coming years. I even ended up there for my pre-doctoral work in 2015. We got our beloved dog Vern that year, I managed to convince Ryan to get us a dog for my birthday, to pierce both his ears while in Toronto, and dye his hair an awful blonde. Ryan also built a very large snowman in Yaletown. Oh and Vern (the human), Kari, Ryan and I took a limo to Seattle! Good times.
2009 gets a little crazy. We go to Tofino, BC for the first time, love it and go back later on in the year. We go to LA and Newport Beach. We go to the Cayman Islands for Food and Wine Magazine’s inaugural Cayman Cookout (I meet Anthony Bourdain and Eric Ripert!), I run my first half-marathon with Ryan waiting for me at the end. Ryan takes up concert piano (kidding). We go to San Francisco. Ryan goes to Vegas and tries the zero-gravity experience with Frank and Vern.
2010 is even crazier. We return to Cayman for the second annual Cayman Cookout. We get our diving certifications. We go to Whistler with the dog. I start blogging with my first photo of Ryan eating a bagel at our favourite place in Kitsilano. Ryan scores free parking in downtown Vancouver and insists I take a photo for memory which I have dug up to report so he can enjoy that recollection of that time he scored free parking. The 2010 winter olympics happen in Whistler/Vancouver. I go to Mexico on field school with my university during that time after watching the opening ceremony with him in a bar on Granville Street behind our condo. Ryan comes and joins me in Guadalajara and we go to San Miguel de Allende. We go sailing with my supervisor on Bowen Island and we host Dave from Philly who we met at the Cayman Cookout. It’s the first time we host a total stranger in our place. It ends up being a great trip as we tour Vancouver Island, Seattle, Bowen Island, and Vancouver with him. Ryan continues to put up with me putting eyebrows on him.
In 2011 we return to the Cayman Islands for a couple of months with the dog this time. I conduct fieldwork for my bachelors. We stay in two different condos. One condo has so many chairs I decide to sit on each and every one of them every day. I document that. Ryan works. After this trip, Ryan cannot stop talking about moving there so we make the decision for him to sell his apartment and move to Cayman. I remain to begin my Master’s the following year and get myself an apartment. We throw a baby shower for Mayu and she gives birth to Yuzu on my birthday. I consider adopting another pekingese-yorkie, porkie, as our doggy daycare has advised us one is up for adoption. At the end of the summer, Ryan leaves me for Cayman…permanently. It’s a rough time. Ryan also gets a nice v-neck sunburn his first month in Cayman. We end the year in LA with a game at the Kings Stadium watching the LA Kings and the Canucks. We drive up along the Pacific Coast Highway to Big Sur, Carmel, and back. We realize 1-way is enough of a drive.