There’s nothing that makes you feel more Canadian than leaving the country. And when you come home, things we have in common coast to coast really stand out.
Our point of re-entry into Canada was Montreal, because we needed to pick a hub out of Iceland that would get us to New Brunswick. Our stay was short and sweet, but Montreal reminded us of many things that make us Canadian.
I used to think Montreal seemed more like Europe, but it now seems more Canadian than ever. Sure, there is a distinctly different language and culture from Western Canada, but that culture is still part of what makes Canada the country that it is, and everything is all so very familiar.
We bought a Sim card through Koodo and got a replacement credit card at the Bank of Montreal. We passed by The Bay, Tim Hortons and Molsons. We drank pop and ate poutine. The girls kept pointing out everything that made them realize we were home.
We didn’t have a lot of time in Montreal, so we stuck to the old city. The best part of the day was taking a small river boat through the old port to get a view of the city from the water.
The next day we were on a plane to visit my sister in Fredericton where my cover photo comes from. I wasn’t sure what language to speak in Canada’s only officially bilingual province (no, Quebec does not count), but we soon found out that the south is mostly anglophone.
Again we were struck by the institutions that spread across the country. We made several trips to Canadian Tire because my sister needed things fixed in her house (Al would have made excuses to go there anyways.) We listened to CBC on the radio and watched our Olympic athletes on tv.
We drove out to the East Coast, but the weather was bad so we had a limited view of the coastline. We missed Hopewell Rocks alltogether but met a fellow volunteer for lunch who we had met in Tanzania, which made the drive worthwhile.
It was sad to leave my sister and her husband, as I have no idea when I’ll see them next. They have the travel bug worse than we do, so I’m not sure if they’ll still be in the country next year. They had better go somewhere cool for us to visit!