It’s here. Again.
Even in shoulder season, when things have died down and fewer people are frequenting town.
It’s still here.
I’m talking about poop. Be it human poop or dog poop, the feces have reared their menacing head back in town once more.
With the beginning of shoulder season, I happily thought to myself that the absence of tourists would come with certain perks — such as the reduction in on-the-sidewalk feces.
How horribly wrong I was.
In the past couple weeks, the scourge of our existence has made its presence known to me on at least three occasions.
In one case, I was happily walking the downtown area at lunch break. I caught a beautiful glimpse of the Stawamus Chief, closed my eyes, took a deep breath, thanked fate for how lucky I am to be here, and opened my eyes.
I turned my eyes to the sidewalk to continue walking and realized something was horribly amiss.
Bam. There it was.
Feces. Staring me right in the face. Mocking me. Laughing at me.
Making me guess — “Hey buddy, why don’t we play a game? Try to figure out if I was made by a human or an animal.”
It brought me back to some of my past travels to otherwise beautiful places.
I remember getting off the train in Paris, awed by the atmosphere, the view of the Eiffel Tower from across the city.
The city was vibrant. The energy was exciting. It felt like it was full of possibilities. Like I had stepped into a postcard.
Bam. It hit me.
The putrid stench of urine — it was everywhere, and it was incredibly overpowering.
Residents of the city of love loved to urinate in public.
I remember walking in Rome, eager to get to the Coliseum. It was a hot, sunny day and yes, again, that atmosphere of possibility and excitement was everywhere. It was remarkable. Beautiful.
But as the temperatures rose in the middle of the day, it hit me.
The smell of feces.
I realized that the sidewalk in the neighbourhood where I was staying was not filled with mud, as I had previously thought. No. This mud was actually dog poo.
Apparently, as the manager of the place where I was staying put it, everybody in that particular area had dogs, but no one was willing to pick up after them.
The end result? It’s best to walk on the street, not the sidewalk.
I’d like to hope that it never comes to that in Squamish.