Even when it’s a relatively new city, Vancouver is a place full of art and culture that sometimes we miss at first sight. Such is the case of the mosaic art pieces, scattered all around Downtown.
The first collection of these hidden treasures can be found in Chinatown, just outside the Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Gardens. It is a wheel of twelve mosaics of every animal of the Chinese Zodiac.
The legend tells the Jade Emperor, the ruler of Heaven, organized a competition on his birthday. He invited all the animals of the Empire and promised that the first twelve of them who crossed the river would have a year of the zodiac named after them. The Rat tricked the Cat and threw it into the water. Then it used the Ox to get first to the other side, being the first animal of the zodiac and the Ox the second.
The Tiger, the Rabbit, the Dragon, the Snake and the Horse came next.
The Goat, the Monkey, and the Rooster helped each other and made it to the other side. The last to cross the river and to get a place in the Zodiac was the Boar.
The Cat was left out and hated and chased the Rat forever.