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The Bong Show

I wake up to the sound of a crane dropping a weight onto a metal piling every morning. Over and over, day after day. Bong… Bong… Bong…

It’s been like this for months. Sometimes the racket will stop for a couple of days, and the silence is bliss. You almost believe it’s all over and done with when suddenly, from a block and a half away, the crane goes back to work. Bong… Bong… Bong…

You know it’s a Monday morning when the bonging begins.

It’s bonging when I leave for work in the morning and it’s bonging when I come home at night. A neighbour of mine who works the late shift can’t sleep. The topic always comes up in casual conversation at the bus stop or in line at the Food Plus, and the consensus is that we’re long past the point of being annoyed by the bonging. We’re absolutely exhausted by it.

A forest of steel pilings already blankets the pit that will one day prop up the foundations of Nita Lake Lodge, keeping all five stories and five stars of this luxury hotel from sinking into the southern shore of the lake.

I don’t know if there’s any viable alternative to hammering the pilings into the ground, but if there isn’t I have one suggestion for the builders – get some more cranes in there. Get some lights. Get a hundred more pilings and go to work in shifts if you have to and end this nightmare as soon as possible for thousands of Creekside residents. Give us a break before spring hits and the summer construction season begins in earnest. Please… I’m begging you!

Bong… Bong… Bong…

For we sorry and sleep-deprived Creekside dwellers, it’s been one big, loud project after another for the past four years. From roadwork and bridge building to the construction of new homes, new hotels and a new mall at the Creekside base, sometimes this work in progress feels like it will never end.

At the same time we know that the moment the machinery stops, we’re screwed. Houses will flood the market and renters will be given notice as the gentrification of the neighbourhood begins in earnest. We’ll have endured half a decade of noise, diesel fumes, dust and inconvenience for nothing. One way or another, we’ll never find peace in Creekside.

Sometimes, when my neighbours are having one of their all-night bonfires, I wish they’d be a little quieter so I could get to sleep. Then I remember that if I’m a little annoyed, the guy around the corner who paid more than a million bucks for his Creekside home, his peaceful mountain retreat, must be steaming. This gives me an idea.

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