This summer I’m staying in Canada for about 2 months, with some small interludes to the States in between. I’m really traversing the country during that time, going from Vancouver to Victoria.
Every time I visit Canada I’m just filled with such joy and I’ve listed 5 reasons why below, in no particular order.
1) America’s hat — Canada just sits so quietly and pleasantly on top of the US. It’s just a country, hanging out up North. It has the same population as all of California (actually California has a few more million), and it just exists as its own country, doing stuff.
2) Parallel Universe — you know those books/shows that have parallel universes? Fringe, The Golden Compass, Dark Matter… to name a few. Being in Canada is like being the star in your own sci-fi parallel universe. It looks a lot like the States. There are McDonald’s and cars drive on the right side of the road and they speak English. But then there are little things here and there that snap you back to reality and makes you think, where am I and how did I get here??? Things like all the labeling on products are in both French and English (I still can’t decide whether that’s fiscally draining, but I also don’t care if it is). Instead of a Dunkin Donuts or Starbucks on every block, there’s a Tim Horton’s. The road signs have Maple Leafs on them and measure things in different units. And then you’ll be talking to someone normally and all of a sudden they’ll say “aboout” or “pro-cess” and the signs will be spelled with things like “centre” or “favourite”. Which leads me to my third reason….
3) The accents —
How could you not love a tiny Ryan Gosling speaking in a Canadian accent?!?! The Canadian accent is one of the truly most cherishable things in this world. It is just so friendly and inviting and makes me want to hug things.
4) Friendliness — I was told the other day (from a Canadian, obviously) that the friendliest Province in all of Canada was Newfoundland, which is where he was from. He was indeed very friendly as evidenced by him inviting me to a dinner later that evening. Newfoundland is home to the city of Gander, which is where all the planes were diverted after September 11th and suddenly the town doubled and tripled in population and were taking people into their homes until it was safe to fly again. There’s a broadway musical aboout it; Come From Away. When asked which province was the meanest, he said Ontario. I thought this was very fitting, as most of my family is from Ontario. But the meanest province in Canada still is probably better than the nicest state in the US. Maybe.
5) The French — I am very biased on this point as I studied French in high school and college and still seem to butcher the language. But I love to hear it all around me. My favorite is that when you’re outside of Quebec, the rest of the country speaks English and it feels normal, but then there will be some random French thrown into the sentence as a little surprise. My favorite has been when listening to CBC public radio, there’s a correspondent who speaks regular English for her news stories but then has a French last name. “With CBC radio I’m Danielle…. *French nasal sounds*.” (Danielle d’Entremont)
What are some of the reasons why you love Canada?