I always enjoy the street scenes and today was no exception. The array of product in a store in Chinatown is always astounding. There are also a lot of exotic to me things that I don't get to use or see every day. I still remember my early days in Vancouver and how a trip to Chinatown was always such a delight. Buying simple things like Sandalwood soap (heavenly fragrance) was a true cultural experience.
Truth be told I only walked a square block and a few extra streets in Chinatown. There is actually much more to see.
I loved the artful tree in front of this traditional looking roof top. There is even a bird perching on top (see side right as you are looking straight at the photo). The sky looks rather gray. It was actually an overcast day today though it cleared up and became quite warm.
These plants make a nice, colourful addition to the street. I am not sure if they are on sale or if they are gifts to the store owners for a new business perhaps.
All over Chinatown the evidence of economic decay is present. So many shops have closed up. For many years now Chinatown has been declining and many shop owners have migrated to the suburb of Richmond (near the Vancouver International Airport) where there is a sizeable Asian community. I admire the business people who stick it out in Chinatown and try to keep things going. I know there have been some efforts over the years to try and revitalize this area. Sadly I think the revitalization is going to change the entire nature of the area.
Already today I saw several businesses that just do not match the historical charm and nature of the businesses here. I also saw evidence of numerous residential building projects that are going to bring in masses of residents and change the nature of the area too.
I know change is always happening but I will personally miss the charm of what was.
It was nice to see some beautiful murals in the area. The one depicted in the photo below is adjacent to an empty lot which is scheduled for a condo project.
This ruby red lamplight post with Chinese writing at the bottom is quite beautiful.
This sign alerts the passersby to the coming condo development. There are several other developments in the general area.
This fast food restaurant, Kent's Kitchen is a very well known and highly frequented restaurant. I stopped by for lunch.
I love this charming, yellow building. At the bottom of the building you can see that other ethnic businesses are moving. There is now a Filipino Restaurant in what used to be a clothing store. In the next block I saw businesses run by Caucasians and Vietnamese people. Chinatown is losing it's historic and distinctly Chinese ambience and I'm guessing that building owners are giving good incentives to other businesses just to keep things going.
I just hope that in years to come there will still be a distinctly Chinese flavour to this area even if things change.
Linking up with Skywatch Friday today.
My the time does fly!
Have a great weekend everyone :-)