True North Strong & Free

June 29, 2015

I should be writing more. I just don't know what to write about. Let’s try this: What's the first thing that pops into my mind? Fries, Dressing, & Gravy. Dandy! For those of you not from Newfoundland or some parts of Nova Scotia, this is a Newfoundland delicacy. Basically, you grab a plate of fries, and put dressing (you might call it something unnecessarily grand like "stuffing") and gravy on top; just like the name suggests. Real hardcores also douse the plate full of any type of vinegar readily available. Or, if you're my cousin Kelly, you make homemade vinegar because "Heinz isn't strong enough".

No surprise I thought on fries, dressing, & gravy as I find myself thinking on Newfoundland regularly. This trip has been no exception. But some other faraway place has also been appearing in my daydreams over these past 5+ months in particular. CANADA. And it all makes sense too. To explain, let’s rewind 14 years.

17 years old and headed to St. FX I was. About exactly halfway through my first semester, I started realizing how unique my home province was (for the first half, I thought everyone was deaf and that was why nobody understood me when I spoke).

Why was I thinking about Newfoundland so much? Simple. Because I wasn't there. When you're somewhere else, you realize and start to to appreciate how special things were/are at home. Unless your home sucks of course. Like St. John's for example!

Anyways, back to my point. In the same was I realized how cool Newfoundland was years ago, I find myself beginning to realize what an inherently cool place Canada and its residents are. It's so cliché, it makes me sick to write about it, but there's no denying it. All the stereotypes, for the most part, are true. 

1.    Canadians are more polite than any other nation (well, maybe second to the Philippines).

2.    Canadians are more apologetic than any other nation.

            - I have Ashley setup on an "apology tally" as I feel she apologizes too much. In the same way Filipinos thank you when it makes absolutely no sense.

3.   Canadians appreciate the weather more than any other nation. 

            - "Well, it's nice outside compared to Canada!"

4.   Canadians seem to ooze some type of "come talk to me" funk that people can't resist.

            - We actually find it difficult to get any lone time in public. Arrogant? Perhaps. But true.

I like to think Canadians are so approachable because we're awesome, and not because they secretly hope we'll sponsor them into Canada. But I could be wrong.

I'll end with one particularly popular Canadian stereotype that we have found to be totally false in our travels. It's the one that suggests that French Canadiens have shall we say, an "air of superiority" to them. That they are better than their English counterparts. Who knows, maybe in Canada it's true, but not on the international scene. All Frenchmen and Frenchwomen we've met worldwide have been super friendly, charming, fun to be around, and most definitely smokers.

Maybe it's because all travellers are awesome.

Au Revoir!

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