For our weekly Q&A series with a randomly selected Bowen Islanders we spoke with Doug Leishman
When did you come to Bowen?
I purchased my house in ’03 and was here for two years part-time, just on the weekends. I came permanently in mid-’05.
How did you come to be on Bowen?
I’d been in Vancouver about 13 years or so and had been looking around for a weekend place. I’d checked out Vancouver Island, east and west, Sunshine Coast and I was familiar with Okanagan. I came over here with a friend who was visiting her aunt in Bowen Court. Because she’d been with me looking at some of these other places, she said, ‘Why don’t you just look around Bowen Island?’ It was a May long weekend. And it was just gorgeous. I drove around and started looking at places not going in – I had the MLS listings. I realized it was the same price range as Sunshine Coast or even Vancouver Island. Plus, I’m a geologist. There’s a lot of geologists here.
The next question is where on Bowen do you live?
Fill the ferry lineup gap or don’t fill the gap?
I just filled a gap just prior to your call. But I wouldn’t do it if I thought there was going to be an overload. I am cognizant of that but I am a gap filler.
What’s your favourite Bowen fact or story?
I’ve had a number of dogs. My last dog just passed away a few months ago. But one of my other dogs, Bo, he was advanced in age and he was getting a little mixed up. Every now and then he’d wander off and at different times I had people call me – he’s in Artisan square, or down in the Cove with the baker or something like that. But one day, he disappeared. And I walked into the municipal hall. I said, ‘Have you seen a golden retriever in here?’ And one of the women said, ‘We saw a dog – a dog just walked down the hall.’ She pointed me just down the hall to the left. So I walked down and ended up in the bylaw officer’s office and there was Bo asleep under the desk.
I also like Bowen just because I can walk out the door and breathe fresh air. I have a beautiful view. And I can get coffee early in the morning and talk to people if I wish and if I don’t wish I could just wander off into the forest.
What’s a Bowen Islander?
When I first moved here, I did sort of take some of the politics kind of seriously. And I did have a couple of letters to the editor where I took sides in certain issues. Which I think a lot of early Bowen Islanders might. But then after a while, the last couple of years, I just said to [heck] with it. I’m just going to live here and just ignore all the noise around me.
What’s your favourite COVID-19 balm or activity?
I miss travelling to a certain extent but the longer the pandemic goes on, the less time I spend in town and I’m just comfortable on Bowen Island. I know that there’ll be some tremendous changes over the next year or so but I have a few friends and we have suppers together every now and then. I’m pretty fortunate. I’m quite content to stay at home reading. I read a lot. I read a lot more related to current affairs as opposed to books.