I imagine this market is in a bustling Asian city, like Bangkok, where a cacophony of sights and sounds greet me. But instead, I find myself in a venue for food and fun in the middle of a parking lot – a good use of space on the way to the Vancouver airport. The Skytrain runs high in the distance and half-built developments fill-in the periphery.
A dozen games and one ride – the Octopus – gives the market a carnival atmosphere. A stage with a group of drummers sets the beat for the evening – steady and energized.
I scan the row of stalls. I’m greeted with a cornucopia of food choices. The nice man offers a Korean takoyaki – a wheat dumpling filled with barbeque duck and topped with mayonnaise. He seems nice, so I try it. A bit gooey, but tasty. My partner samples a Japanese take on poutine. Or a bowl of ramen if you’re in a traditional mood.
I scrutinize things I don’t need but might want to buy just for the novelty of it. Pens, markers, pencils and notebooks – featuring Japanese pop icons – Pokemon, Pousheen the Cat – stare out from racks and tables. Hankering for a pair of socks with the Eiffel Tower? It’s here. Or a cringeworthy t-shirt …
It won’t be long till the market, full of entrepreneurial spirit, becomes a condominium complex.
But for now, a Canadianized version of a lively Asian market suits my ‘milling about’ mood.