Tuesday, August 11, 2015

An Afternoon in Finn Slough

It was a beautiful Saturday when my cousin and I decided to go on a out of the blue adventure into a place I've never heard. What makes this place unique would most definitely be the residency, as it tends to be more than what meets the eye. Let's look into the settlement.


June 20, 2015

My cousin Mina and I usually have a weekly yoga session at her house, and so we decided to try it in her backyard. It was really peaceful, and most appropriate to do some sun salutations while it graces its warmth upon us. After a few stances and positions, we decided to check out a place that I've been wanting to see for some time.

I'm an avid reader of 365 Days of Dining, but do not let the title of the blog mislead you. The winner, Lindsay Anderson, got the opportunity to eat out every day for a year to showcase the variety of food offered in the city of Richmond. The most eye-popping post that I saw involved this little area called Finn Slough. It was a settlement for Finnish back in the 1800s and not much has changed, other than the buildings now home to a handful of people.

At first, it was difficult to find, because of the complex roads with sharp turns you must take or else you're on a new road. But within getting lost, we saw some massive houses that I never knew existed in Richmond - I'm talking about 10+ acres of land, and the house of a small apartment, it's truly remarkable. When we finally got there, not many people were there, other than some tourists and a what looked like a preschool. Each of the places have their own style, which creates a surprise for every time you go deep into the neighbourhood. I wonder how the people managed to get this property, whether it was handed down to them, or if it was a listing in real estate.

Intricately positioned to provide some charm

Hooks and chains

The reddest raspberry I've seen

I wanted to venture inside, but it's not a tourist attraction, and the plants have wildly grown to make it dangerous to look into hidden pathways. If not for the grass, the place would be filled with water, providing easy access for the boats and painting a different picture at the slough:

All dried up and nowhere to go

Makes you wonder what it looked like before

We kept walking around, and we stumbled upon a little pathway. Curious beings that we are, we stopped by this sign that explained a little bit more of the place. I cannot recall all of the details, but I believed that it was a site for a certain type of flower and that it was going in extinction? Let's just say that Mina was reading the post, while I took a photo of it:

Chockfull of history, and with a QR code!

Where does this lead you to?

There are not many houses, but it's fascinating to see the residency of the place, where you don't know exactly which one can call home. That is what makes it charming, it's a mystery many do not get to know. It's like the pages that came to life from a fairytale, but less groomed. As you can see, the view is mostly just a slim river and tall grass:

Still beautiful, nonetheless

Lines and abandoned boats yet still captivating

We decided to cross the bridge and noticed some interesting features on the other side. For instance, they have an annual art fair that we just missed. I wonder how many people have sat down, enjoyed the view and painted the scenery of this place. There was also a pathway with some interesting signs, with one in Mandarin:

What does the yellow sign mean?

Behind us was a man who lived beyond the gated area, and he was telling us that he has been living here for 23 years - that's practically whole life (minus a year). It's been here for such a long time, and yet I've only heard about it now.

It's a place that I never expected to see in Richmond, considering all over town it's all redevelopment. I do hope this remains the same, it captures the simple times that Richmond once was, where it was all about the fishing industry. Goes to show you how the times have changed.

Quite the adventure, getting to know a new old location, and spending time with my cousin, talking about life and what journeys we will be taking along the way. Walking certainly does something to a person.

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