103-1338 West 10th Avenue, Vancouver, BC V6H1J6 (we do accept mail):
We're finally getting settled into our new apartment. Three weeks after shipping our belongings out here they finally arrived and in fairly good order. Only one broken lamp and one broken platter. Otherwise, everything was there and accounted for and everything was in good condition. The biggest hit from the move was that it was more weight then we had expected, and therefore cost more money. I expect that these companies manipulate the weight of your things to increase the price they get. It was a shock to me that a move can almost double in its estimated amount. I guess we definitely learned a lesson from that experience. Nonetheless, everything arrived and is now in our possession and so I'm not going to complain or think about it any longer.
When arriving back in Vancouver I had a number of interviews lined up. On with A&W Canada and one with Sauder industries. The A&W interviews went amazing. I really connected with the people at the company and felt it was, or would be a great fit. I had four interviews with A&W and thought they all went great. Finally they asked for my references and I gave them a list of four people in Ontario to contact. This was the last I heard from A&W and it has been almost two weeks with no progress. They have not contacted my references yet and nothing has moved forward. The recruiter tells me that things take a while with A&W so I am trying to be patient and wait, but beleive me it is one of the most difficult things to do, especially when you NEED a job, and as soon as possible. Please pray that I will hear from this company, that they will make progress in the job search and that ultimately I would get this position with them in the purchasing department. The Sauder interview did not go well, I knew during the interview that I just wasn't connecting to the guy and it wasn't going to be good. I felt this was ok because I just wasn't feeling the connection or fit either. I'm still working about three days a week at Polygon homes which is great. I've been blessed to be working at the head office the last three weeks which is literally right out my front door and around the block. I also have a contract with Acer computers for the Olympics supervising the promotional tents down in the Olympic village. I am super exciting to have this opportunity and can't wait to get down there. Its going to be one big party!! Michelle is still working at American Eagle in the Pacific Centre mall. She has began to connect with some of the people there and is starting to gain some friendships. It is a cool atmosphere there because most of the employees are travelers from around the world who are working a part time job to have an income while they are in Vancouver. Lots of Aussies, Irish and Japanese who Michelle is really having a good time getting to know. I must admit she still misses the friends (and more like family) from the Cambridge American Eagle. Michelle is going to take a Manager position at the AE in March if I don't find a permanent position by then. Again, please pray that God would give me a great place to work to provide for us and our life here in one of the most expensive cities in Canada.
In November I drove our VW out across the US in what I thought was a great road trip. When I got to the city I was able to park it for free in Julie and Ben's neighborhood on the road. When I rented our apartment on the west side you have to have a paid permit to park on the street by your house. Therefore I had to get the car insured and registered right away with the BC gov't or ICBC to be more precise. The second day back from arriving back to Vancouver in January I went out and spent the day getting the car insured and licensed. By late morning I had everything completed, including my parking permit and arrived back home to the apartment, parking the car in the ally behind our building. About two hours later I was looking out the window when I noticed our car wasn't where I thought I had parked it. I proceeded to think hard whether I had actually parked it somewhere else. I didn't think I had so I went outside to take a look and try and find the car. I couldn't find it anywhere outside. Many thoughts went through my head, had it been stolen?? Was is towed?? Was I losing my mind???? Well, I found the phone number for the city parking authority and sure enough they had towed my car for parking too close to someone's driveway. Somewhere were I always see people parked, but I guess this was the city's was of initiating newly registered vehicles into the streets of Vancouver. Luckily, the impound lot was only a 20 minute walk from our place and I was able to go pick it up before I had to go get Michelle from work downtown. To make things even more interesting, last Sunday Michelle had to work so I drove her to work and proceeded to Westside church. After the service I was driving home when I drove into an intersection where a previously invisible 4X4 magically appeared and stuck the passenger side of our beloved VW. Fortunately, I, nor the other driver where injured. Unfortunately our cars were, and not by the fault of the other driver. Needless to say that our insurance is now through the roof and I have to pay a deductible to get the car back after repair, all without a job by the way. Oh, and we are car-less for a minimum or two weeks (we predict four). As my Uncle Ben warns, and him and Julie have experienced, Vancouver is a city that initially tries to spit you out. I guess an adventure is nothing without its challenges, right?!
Yes, there are many good things going on with us!! I know it seems like everything is falling apart and I'm sure many people will say that this is proof you shouldn't have made the move to Vancouver. This is the kind of Struggle that I know God brings us out the other side with more character and strength then we can every hope. In times of struggle like these it just reminds me that I have absolutely no control of life and what direction it can take. We may point in a direction (like Vancouver) and go, but you never really know what shape its going to take, or what your are going to experience. It's times like these that strengthens faith in a God that has the power to control our situations and has the power to bring great, wonderful things out of what we as humans might see as dire circumstances. It is times like these that draws us closer to a God whose strength and power is shown through our weakness, because we really cannot do "life" on our own!
We have amazing neighbors, who I hope to become good friends with as we begin to hang out together. Steve and Elissa are so fun and fresh and I can't wait to spend more time with them. We're looking forward to dinner at their place tomorrow evening, I think we're having Thai soup, made with stuff from Granville market! I hear Elsisa is a top notch cook!
We also are getting together with some other westsiders Mike and Carrie. We were supposed to do brunch today when Carrie got sick. Hopefully next Sunday we will get together to hang out. They live down by Kits beach which is so beautiful.
As the Olympics approach we will have a full house (one bedroom apartment)! Of course we hoped to have company soon and our hopes are now reality now that Nicole, Chris and Katie have all booked tickets to come out and stay with us for over a week in February. Michelle and I are so excited to have familiar faces hear, and especially such good friends. We can't wait for the fun we will have with them hanging out and partying during the games. It's going to be GREAT!
We're getting settled, slowly and surely and things will start to come together and stabilize soon. All we can do is work hard, spend less and trust that God will provide, not in the way we want... but in the way he has planned for us. We came here trusting that he would provide and we will continue to maintain that faith. We've had some great times here already and look forward to more adventures, (good or bad) in our future.
Thanks for reading and we will try and keep the updates more frequent! Love you All. Jordan and Michelle