Although I was born in England and am a British citizen, I’m also a naturalized Canadian with Canadian citizenship.
We went to Canada when I was 4 months old and other than a year in England when I was 6, and a year and half in the States, I’ve lived in Canada my whole life. I’ve lived in every province but Manitoba, Saskatchewan, the Yukon and North West Territories. It’s a huge country and I’ve driven across it on the Trans Canada Highway 3 times, and once across the continent via the northern U.S. – to get a change of scenery!
We went to Quebec when I was a baby and lived in 2 different French villages before I was 5, then Ontario for a year, back to England, back to Canada: Nova Scotia – New Brunswick – Nova Scotia – New Brunswick – Nova Scotia – New Brunswick, then Alberta – Ontario – Quebec – Labrador (part of Newfoundland) – Quebec – British Columbia, (then the States), back to Quebec, then off to Europe! (That’s why I think I can do A-Z Places I’ve lived!)
Which part of Canada is my home? All of it! Except maybe the Prairies.
I guess I’m first of all a Maritimer – someone who grew up east of Quebec. Maritimers are a special breed. What the region lacks in economic wealth is vastly made up for by hospitality. Although strangers are viewed with a wary eye, doors are often left unlocked and many hours are spent round kitchen tables drinking bottomless pots of tea (or bottles of beer) with neighbors, who may well live a mile or so down the road, and who I remember as being very warm, friendly and generous. Perhaps because Dad was the minister, we always received lots of freebies: turkeys at Christmas, boxes of harvest goodies in the autumn, or someone’s fresh-baked cookies, banana loaf, or bread – just because. I definitely grew up with a profound sense that the earth’s bounty is freely available and readily shared.
When I left Canada in 2002, I embarked on an adventure, and one I wouldn’t trade for anything. But oh, how I’ve missed Canada! What have I missed?
The wide open spaces, the forests, the lakes, the rivers, the mountains – Canada: from sea to shining sea! I grew up playing in the woods, swimming in the LaHave and Tobique Rivers, Lake Ontario and the Atlantic Ocean, running across open fields, picking wild berries and apples – and even potato picking for money, and I wouldn’t trade that for the best school in the world.
I also miss Canada’s way of life and standard of living, and the intense sense of fairness Canadians have. Of course there are things about Canada that annoyed me when I lived there, but absence does make the heart grow fonder and I’m looking forward to going home.
- Canada pays steep price for fragmented electricity market (theglobeandmail.com)
- Minimum wage rises across the Maritimes (cbc.ca)
- Maple syrup producers feeling pinch (cbc.ca)
- Cargo to all over Canada (packandmovedubai.wordpress.com)