life inspired: we were here

we walked these streets like kings

For round three of “what inspired me lately” I bring you the song We Were Here. We Were Here is by a Swiss pop duo called Boy and I can’t tell you anything else about them because I haven’t made it past this song yet.

I heard this song on the radio recently and have had it on repeat ever since (ok, not literally :p but I have listened to it lots of times). It totally captured me, although maybe for different reasons than the artist intended. Or maybe not, who knows. In the song, the speaker describes how her presence, her roots in a city change the landscape in a way that lasted far beyond her stay. I don’t know the artist’s motivation behind the lyrics but for me it resonates with my current mandate to rise to the challenge of urban living.

I love that it’s a song about the city- it’s not about frolicking through the fields, exploring the woods, or planting crops. The language is distinctly urban and it has become my Vancouver Song.

Lyrics:

We walked these streets like kings, our faces in the wind

and everywhere we were, we made the city sing

we sang “forever young”, we had our fingers crossed

and when the city sleeps, it dreams of us

yeah, it still does

oh, love, it changes shapes, it glows in many shades

we won’t be gone as long as our echoes resonate

we need no photographs; the past’s not only past

i find us everywhere and that’s how the magic lasts

cause everywhere we’ve been, we have been leaving traces

and they won’t ever disappear

we were here, we were here, we were really here

and the rains get rough but time can’t wash us off

we won’t ever disappear

we were here, we were here, we were really here

it’s only little things; footmarks and fingerprints, a treasure hunt through town

it’s full of evidence, our monuments are all around

everything’s on the move; the paint is wet, all colours new

but if you look carefully, you’ll see us shining through

 

As a young renting family, the question of how to put down roots comes up a LOT in conversations with our friends who, like us, #donthaveamillion. So many have made community here and would like to stay but can’t quite envision growing their family in a basement suite. It might work right now, but what about in a year from now? Five years? Ten years? The picket fence ideal is diminishing and a long hard look at our priorities is in order. In a time of rising rents and reno-victions, can we really make this work?

For me and mine, our living situation is quite stable but we still feel the vacuum sucking our peers away and there are lots of unknowns in our future. What we DO know is that where God has placed us, He has prepared good works for us. We may never own a piece of Vancouver real-estate but the whole city is our oyster. We won’t hold back from investing in a place that may or may not pay financial returns in the form of an appreciating land asset. Whatever lies in the future, wherever we end up, we can always look back on these days and say that we were really here.

I know the connection between this song and those thoughts might seem like a stretch but in the muddy puddle of my inner workings, the Vancouver Question is something I carry pretty close to the surface. It doesn’t take much more than a pebble or a song on the radio to bring it all forth.

I also think this song might be about when we visit a restaurant as a family. Because everywhere we’ve been, we’ve been leaving traces…

 

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