Friday, October 14, 2011

A Year in Canada.

I was just flipping through these photos and an airplane flew by. I could hear it and see it right outside of my porch window. Not a small plane either, it was a normal commercial airplane. Usually, planes are just small lights in the sky but this one was really low. I mean, I could see the logo on the side of it. Weird...

Anyway, the combination of the fall photos and the airplane just made me realize that today (or tomorrow) (or yesterday) (sometime this week, I think) (but I think it's today) is my one year anniversary of Canadian life!

One year ago I flew into this country to live with my husband. We had been dating for six years and had been married for just over six months at that point. The whole long process of visa applications took a while because Canada had to decide (1) I was, in fact, married to The Canadian for the right reasons and not just free healthcare and (2) that I am not a terrorist. Wasn't that nice of them?

I've moved a lot in my life but moving to Canada was by far the hardest move of them all. Every other move had been fairly temporary (for lack of a better word). That is, the moves were made to places that I could leave when ever I darn well pleased. If the winds changed, then I could change with them. Oh, and all the other moves were in, ya know, my country. I was never more than a days drive from friends and family. But moving to Canada, while I choice I happily made, was different. It was permanent. Yes, it was with my wonderful husband and his family and friends, but it was very far away from my family and friends. 

After months of being away from The Canadian, I was so glad to see him the night I landed. But I still couldn't help being a little scared. I had just left my family, my friends and my job. Plus, I really didn't know anything about life in Canada. Kilometers, winters, funny colored money, lack of cell phones -- these things take some getting used to. 

So there I was, an American in Canada and a brand new wife that had never really lived with her husband. No. Big. Deal.

But I jumped in both feet first and set about getting to know Canadian life. And I've had a lot of fun doing it.

I've learned how to cook,

I've learned how to drive on ice,

I've been sailing,

I've learned how to convert all measurements to metric,

I've learned to live without Starbucks and embrace Tim Hortons,

I painted our entire house,

I've learned how to snow shoe and cross country ski,

I've bought a new parka,

I've racked up huge phone bills with international calls,

I've started a blog,

I've gone back to school,

I've learned to live without grits and

I've embraced weird Canadian foods, like poutine (french fries, melted cheese and gravy).

I'm sure there are others, but that is all I can think of off the top of my head. Not bad, eh? (kidding! I don't really say eh?)

But there are certain things that I've held on to for dear life. Like use of the word y'all . I say it as often as possible. Just to remind everyone that as much as I like Canada, I am still a Southern girl. And that will never change. Despite my winter tires and my parka and my love of the beautiful fall leaves.

They are pretty, aren't they?

One day I may get used to the lack of sweet tea, grits, and warm weather but in the mean time...

Cheers to an amazing year with The Canadian in Canada! To many more...

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