Saturday, January 24, 2015

So, how's life in Canada?

People keep asking us how living in Canada is. It’s a logical question obviously, but kind of a hard one to answer. Because the truth is that Canada just suits us better than Holland ever did. All of us. Whenever we try to use this as an answer the follow up question then is: why? And that’s the hard part to answer. It is hard because on the one hand, we find Canada very similar to Holland and thus we kind of just fit in. On the other hand, Canada is so different from Holland. Every single thing, big or small, seems to be different.

We’ve been amazed by the kindness of people in Canada, that’s probably one of the biggest differences. A difference that involves every part of your life and that makes a real difference in how well you feel ‘at home’ in a country. Everywhere you are, people want to help you. They offer to help you or they just help you, no questions asked. For them it’s the logical thing to do. Once they find out you’ve just moved here they invite you in. Quite literally in their houses but in their lives as well. It’s a genuine effort to make a potential new friend and they have no expectations about anything in return. Canadians seem to be more about giving than about receiving. The joy they feel when they give is all the return they seem to want.

The kindness is related to their peace of mind, their relaxed way of living. They don’t seem to be as stressed as people in Holland currently are and they don’t seem to be in such a hurry. That means they will always have time for a chat, an invitation or some help. Traffic is a really good example of this. Canadians don’t feel the urge to sneak in front of you, cut that corner or maybe just pick that red light in order to save that all important second or two. Whenever they see a pedestrian wanting to cross a road, they stop. Really all of them do. REALLY, even when there’s no crossing! The pedestrian doesn’t expect them to do so and are really grateful that the car stopped and they smile at the driver, who in return, smiles back. It’s amazing, you should try this! Or wait, maybe you shouldn’t, because in Holland the driver behind you will probably think you’re an idiot for stopping when you didn’t have to and he will probably honk at you –or worse-.

It’s all about the space too, though. When there is plenty of room to park your car or entertain in you tend to give others some space as well. The big plus of all that space is that you also get an abundance of play space. Nature to walk or bike in, playgrounds you can go insane in and nice big lanes to live on. There are trees literally everywhere, so of course you get squirrels in your garden. Even though we live in a city we have seen more birds here than we have in a long time. It all just makes people happier I guess. And when you’re happy, you’re not going to be annoyed quite so quickly.

The space also facilitates the big stores. Because why should you build a tiny shop when you have all this land to build on? And once you have such a big store, why not fill it with loads of goods? Every shopping trip takes at least an hour simply because of all the choices you get here. It’s never a case of simply picking up a box of so or so. You always end up in a seemingly endless isle filled of sorts and types of whatever it is you needed. And every shopping trip you find at least one product you never knew you needed because you didn’t knew it existed. It’s an adventure. A great adventure.

So living in Canada is still great. A dream come true. A dream filled with space, nature, squirrels, big cars, the best shopping trips ever and the loveliest people you’ll ever meet.
So far, so good :)

No comments:

Post a Comment