Jody Vance

Positive Parking – by Jody Vance

Getty Images: Eric Woods

Here’s the scene.

I had a wee fender bender (my fault) a couple of weeks ago and had a loaner car from Jim Pattison Toyota Downtown while they fixed “said bumper”.

That little Corolla was a godsend in getting me to and from all of my planned meetings and such.  I’d added the loaner license plate number to my pay-by-phone parking app (if you don’t use this app, you should!) so it was easy to hop in and out of various busy streets.

I parked my loaner a tonne over the four days I used it — and then I picked up my happy little 2016 Prius before heading out for my planned lunch with my very pregnant friend Robin.  Congratulating myself, I found sweet parking on Granville St – used the app to pay – and headed over to Heirloom.

Tangent: Heirloom is our fave spot to fit Robin’s cravings (can you say apple and old cheddar grilled cheese with home made hot sauce?!).

Two delicious hours later, I returned to my car with 5 minutes to spare on the app.  Fluttering in the breeze was a ticket.  (!?!)  I eye rolled to myself as it dawned on me that the app was still set to my loaner car plate.  DAMN DAMN DAMN!  There was $100 I wasn’t planning to spend on lunch…..

Just for the hell of it, with nothing to lose, I called the City of Vancouver.  For as much as folks bitch about City Hall I must say that every time I’ve called there the customer service has been quite stellar.  After explaining my situation, taking full responsibility for being an idiot with regard to the plate mix up on the app, the woman helping me said, “Oh my gawd, I’ve done that! Stand by.”  She put me on hold for 2 minutes and then came back.  “I see you did pay for the spot you are on, I will cancel the ticket.”

I felt a bit like I’d won the lottery.  There is actually technology for brain farts when parking. It made my day.

I texted Robin to tell her what had transpired and her reply was: “good things happen to good people.”  I laughed to myself as I saw how this unfortunate ticket had actually turned into a nice little silver lining.  Sometimes there are good stories to be found in this world of road rage and price gouging parking.

What’s next?  Well, I may just see if folks let me merge onto the Lions Gate Bridge — go big or go home, right?

Find the silver lining in your Saturday, it’s there, sometimes you might just have to go looking for it — after an eye roll.

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  • Reply sharonhales March 11, 2017 at 11:21 am

    I needed to read this! My day has not started well but you reminded me to take the advice I always dish out: try to find the bright side of things. Or maybe your post is my silver lining – cuz it’s reminded me not to be such a Debbie Downer! PS – I love the app too! No more searching for coins!

  • Reply Tina March 11, 2017 at 11:37 am

    That has happened to me and I called the City too. Also received excellent service and the ticket cancelled. 🙂

  • Reply Linda March 11, 2017 at 1:52 pm

    I’m a complete ignoramus as far as technology is concerned (don’t even have a cell phone!) so I’m hanging on in there re your parking hi-jinks, though got the gist of it, knowing there would be a ‘one more thought coming’ as so often there is in your writings.

    You looked at it from an app point of view, I picked up on the human aspect……the reaction of the woman at City Hall and how she followed through, how nice was that! It always makes me appreciative of living in Canada….I’m an ex Brit and a few other countries in-between…..when Canadians do what they do so well….say it like it is and meet you half way. Can’t be bad!

    Cheers for saying, Linda.

  • Reply jennjilks March 19, 2017 at 7:17 pm

    Gawd, you must know people. We were stranger visiting, and got no help at all. You must have a secret app. I was most pissed off with B.C. police.

    • Reply Jody Vance March 20, 2017 at 6:35 pm

      Really? You used the Vancouver City Parking App? It’s not a secret. Were you disputing a ticket?

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