Well... This is obviously my "little bit about Canada" page. Just to enlighten... a few of our quirks and an opportunity to humorously dispel some of those misconceptions and rumours.
We are the same as you. We are not an alien planet. lol We are a multi-cultural, multi-religion, ethnically diverse society.
We are easy going people, believe in ethic diversity, non-segregation and freedom of sexual orientation. We are a very tolerant society.
We do not live in igloo's. We do not all wear seal skin coats. We do not all look like the image of an Eskimo although part of our proud heritage are the Eskimo people :-). We do not hunt and trap whatever for a living and to put food on our tables.
We have Canadian Natives. Aboriginal people that founded this country. Although like the States our Government has shafted them horrendously throughout the centuries. Most Canadians are not proud of this fact.
We are known as the 'polite people'. We are so laid back it is ridiculous.
We believe in gun control.
We are part of the "British Commonwealth". Although we make our own laws.
We speak the "King's English" not American English.
And yes, some of us do say 'eh?' It is slang. It means "do you know what I mean" more or less, or can mean 'what' in a rather silly way.
We still use our letter 'u'. lol No.. we are not a bunch of illiterates that cannot spell words like labour, neighbour, honour, humour, colour, etc. It is simply that we still use the letter 'u'.
We call the bathroom the 'loo' and have many other quaint sayings that mostly derive from the British.
ooooh... we put vinegar on our chips!!
We eat fish & chips. nope.. not potato chips.. what are known as 'french fries'. And yes.. we indeed put vinegar on them.
Some of us even put vinegar (& salt) on our regular potato chips too.
We eat Yorkshire Pudding, crumpets and buttertarts. You haven't lived until you try them.
We drive in kilometers, not miles. So watch those speeds if you are visiting.... if it says 100 for crying out loud it is not 100 mph! It is about 60 mph...
We are not living in a cold, frozen, white, tundra.
Here in Toronto we can and do reach 100 degrees F in the summer at times.
We do not get the snow some people seem to think we do. Toronto gets little. A few good blasts in the winter and usually that is it. It can get damn cold though in January & February. Some provinces get more snow and colder weather. Depends on where you are. East coast is worse than the west coast. Matter of fact, British Columbia has much the same mild temps and wet weather as England does in some parts. Many of the States get much colder and snowier winters than we do!!!
We DO NOT all speak French! Surprise! Indeed we have the province of Quebec that is basically a French speaking province but there are a heck of a lot of English speaking people there as well.
We have 10 provinces and three territories (we used to have two but recently added Nunavut). We do not have 'states'.
We are the 2nd largest country in the world. First is what was formally known as the U.S.S.R. Since the U.S.S.R. has broken up into many new smaller countries I guess that now makes Canada the largest country in the world!! Although the States may look real big on a map, we are actually larger.
We have 4, count em.. 4 season's! Spring, Summer, Fall & Winter. Not just winter. And no, winter does not last 6 months either. Although since we don't like the cold and snow like most people we feel it is 6 months at times. lol
We have our own holidays. Although we do share a few with the States (and other parts of the world such as Easter, Christmas, Labour Day, etc.). We do have a Thanksgiving here as well but ours is in October. We do not celebrate the 4th of July! It has no significance to us. Our 'fireworks' day is in May and it is "Victoria Day". It honours Queen Victoria.
Speaking of Queen's. We have a Queen. Her name is Elizabeth. We have princes, and a princess or two as well :-)) No King.
We have a PRIME MINISTER! We do not have a president. We do not have a vice-president. lol Although we know the president's name in the States, very very few Americans know our Prime Minister's name. Sad.. but true. Seems the border is the cut off point so they don't teach Canadian history or economics etc. to their children. It is almost like we don't exist at times. Most maps made in the United States have no Canada on them. If there, usually it is nothing but a big spot on the map. No boundries, nothing. Very strange indeed.
We wear 'toques'. What are known as ski-hats in other lands.
We are a land rich in minerals, oil, forestry, wheat and other crops, and great people. Our salmon is the best in the world.
We have the tallest free standing structure in the world in Toronto. The C.N. Tower. We also have the first retractable domed stadium. The Dome! lol
We have incredibly beautiful mountain ranges, lakes and forests.
We have the most magnificent water falls called Niagara Falls. We share it with the States but our side is gorgeous. Yes, there actually is a big difference between the two sides.
We do not have the death penalty. Although the majority of Canadians would like to see it brought back! We do not extradite either to countries that do have it. Again, which most of us would prefer we did. We get too many major, violent criminals running across the border to escape their fate there.
Speaking of borders, we have the worlds longest open border. And we have the world's longest Street. It is called Yonge Street.
Although we don't go around flag waving (except on Canada Day and such) we are very proud and patriotic citizens.
We have cops. Not Sheriff's. We do have Sheriff's but they are not like in the States. You will not get pulled over for speeding on a highway by a Sheriff here.. nor are small towns run by them. Sheriff's have different responsibilities here.
Some of the best foods can be bought and eaten here. Some of my favourites are... Tandori Chicken (from India), roti (from Trinidad), hot/spicy patties (from Jamaica), souvlaki (from Greece), chicken fried rice and chicken with veggies stir-fried (Chinese), real fish & chips which is halibut deep fried in a very thin crispy batter and real (not frozen) chips (from England of course). Oh yes, and street vendor hotdogs & sausage. Hot Italian sausage is the best!
We are big tea and coffee drinkers.
We have manners! Most of us still say 'please' and 'thank you' and have respect for our elders.
Men and women wear earrings.. and have tattoos' as well. Some of us even pierce our navels, nose, etc. etc. We won't get into the etc's here.. lol
Women own businesses, are C.E.O's of major corporations, are Doctors in an ever increasing number.. We have brains and use them! Hate to say it though but we are still paid less than men. Someday, someday very soon we have to get that straightened out.
We have universal health care and I personally don't care what any other country may say, it is the best system. At least everyone gets health care from the poorest of the poor to the rich and it is equal health care. If I was homeless and needed a new heart I'd go on the same list as everyone else and the surgery wouldn't cost me anything. I would not have million dollar hospital bills nor have to deal with such atrocities as H.M.O's.
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