“If you live on a boat or a float home, you’re likely a bit quirky,” says George Milne. “You tend to have a higher than average quirk-count.” George is the new coordinator for Fisherman’s Wharf, and the self-proclaimed “Sheriff of the Wharf”. You’ll see him walking the docks, welcoming people and keeping an eye on the shops, restaurants and tour companies, the float homes, liveaboards and commercial fishing vessels. One of Victoria’s top attractions for visitors and locals alike, it’s a busy place.
George arrived in Victoria from Vancouver, where he lived on a boat in False Creek for four years. It’s made it a little easier over the past couple of months as he’s been getting to know the wharf’s residents and commercial operators, and learning the unique maintenance and upkeep needed on the docks, including all the pipe work, and safety mechanisms.
“I think people in the community are more accepting of me because I’ve lived on a boat,” he says. “I can talk to them about what it’s like tying your lines up when the wind is rocking your boat back and forth. I know that when it’s cold, they may be going through $100 every few days to fill the propane tank. I just understand where they’re at.” He’s enjoyed getting to know members of the tightly knit community of like-minded people, and soon he’ll embark on a wish-list of improvements. Among those: transforming the on-site marina office into a more functional space, where clients can complete paperwork, enquire about billing, and make payments.