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Old Sep 10th 2017, 8:24 pm   #31
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

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Originally Posted by Inabsentia_ View Post
I've been here a bit over 2 years and I can tell you: it never stops. Whilst I don't actively compare prices or anything like that, it's a bit difficult not to compare the vast differences in architecture, culture, food and so on because they're so frequently encountered.

As an example: In Canada anything early or pre-1900's is considered old - that isn't old, at all. Also, there is this weird concept of Canadian values that is pushed (obscene politeness, resilience, "we're like Europe" etc.) which is simply false. (I'm pretty certain "sorry, thank you and please" are said way more in the UK). It also shadows the U.S. in business practices such as the bizarre banking system, tipping, little to no consumer or employee protection laws, rubbish TV with ads every 3 seconds for mental health meds etc which are the exact opposite of what you would have known all your life.

The reality is that you're not imagining things, it is better in the UK/Europe. So the question is, why stay here? and if you need to, how do you do it? You need to have a reason to stay - that could be a job, a relationship, family, your love of the outdoors - whatever it is for you. If you have that, then it's easy to go into the next step: I like to think of this as the acceptance/brainwashing step, you just slowly try to forget your past - stop caring that there is a better world out there, and accept the present.


I think you have to think of the following steps ...............


What did you expect when you moved here???

To find a carbon copy of the UK, just because Canada is part of the Commonwealth and was once a Colony?

What would you expect if you moved to Australia ........... also once a colony and one that received felons from the UK?? They also have very different architecture, foods, customs, banking etc.


You flippin' well moved to another country, and should get that into your head as soon as possible after arriving, if not before!


Yes, buildings older than 1900 ARE considered old because WE did not intrude on the ground here until a relatively short time before that. Have you ever looked at the forts and buildings constructed in the 18th century? Or looked at the history of the First Nations who were here for hundreds of years before we immigrants forced them off their land.

You have to condense your idea of history .......... think in terms of Europe taking hundreds of years to move from A to B, while Canada, the US, Australia etc have moved the same distance in a much shorter period of time.

I learnt that in my first year in North America ........ people were proud of houses built in the 1850s because there had been no other buildings in that area before that time! Condensed down ................ 100 years over here equals what might have taken 400 or 500 or longer in Europe.


Please don't move to Canada, or any other country expecting it to be like back home. Appreciate that you are moving somewhere where there are different customs, businesses.

Australians used to have two words in the 50s through the 70s for Brits who emigrated down there and then kept saying how much better it was back home.


If you haven't heard them, as the Aussies may have become a little politer in the last 30 or so years ................ B***** Poms.

Usually followed by "Go back home then."!!
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Old Sep 10th 2017, 9:04 pm   #32
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

When I arrived in 1969 I was told by another Brit immigrant, who had already been here since 1947, that if I wanted the best chance of success I should not compare with the UK and should remember these three words:
adopt, adapt and assimilate
It worked for me. I have never, ever felt homesick or considered returning to the UK. It's not perfect but it has done me well.
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Old Sep 10th 2017, 9:11 pm   #33
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

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Originally Posted by scilly View Post
I think you have to think of the following steps ...............


What did you expect when you moved here???

To find a carbon copy of the UK, just because Canada is part of the Commonwealth and was once a Colony?

What would you expect if you moved to Australia ........... also once a colony and one that received felons from the UK?? They also have very different architecture, foods, customs, banking etc.


You flippin' well moved to another country, and should get that into your head as soon as possible after arriving, if not before!


Yes, buildings older than 1900 ARE considered old because WE did not intrude on the ground here until a relatively short time before that. Have you ever looked at the forts and buildings constructed in the 18th century? Or looked at the history of the First Nations who were here for hundreds of years before we immigrants forced them off their land.

You have to condense your idea of history .......... think in terms of Europe taking hundreds of years to move from A to B, while Canada, the US, Australia etc have moved the same distance in a much shorter period of time.

I learnt that in my first year in North America ........ people were proud of houses built in the 1850s because there had been no other buildings in that area before that time! Condensed down ................ 100 years over here equals what might have taken 400 or 500 or longer in Europe.


Please don't move to Canada, or any other country expecting it to be like back home. Appreciate that you are moving somewhere where there are different customs, businesses.

Australians used to have two words in the 50s through the 70s for Brits who emigrated down there and then kept saying how much better it was back home.


If you haven't heard them, as the Aussies may have become a little politer in the last 30 or so years ................ B***** Poms.

Usually followed by "Go back home then."!!
You're right, I perhaps overstated the minor inconveniences of moving here. There is a lot of great things about Canada but I'm just trying to say the societal norms and so on are vastly different and "not as advertised". This doesn't mean they're bad, just different and therefore while it is natural to draw comparisons, it probably isn't in your best interests to do so.
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Old Sep 10th 2017, 11:45 pm   #34
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

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Originally Posted by Inabsentia_ View Post
You're right, I perhaps overstated the minor inconveniences of moving here. There is a lot of great things about Canada but I'm just trying to say the societal norms and so on are vastly different and "not as advertised". This doesn't mean they're bad, just different and therefore while it is natural to draw comparisons, it probably isn't in your best interests to do so.


I realised that!!

But too many people seem to arrive over here with the expectation that it will be another but better version of the UK, and never seem to come to terms with it.

50 years after leaving the UK, I have to say that a) I have never felt homesick for the UK, b) after the first year, I have very rarely compared here with there, c) I have never wanted to return to live in the UK and have preferred to spend holidays in elsewhere.

Once or twice over those years, we have been forced to consider what we would do if OH was fired due to government cutbacks to universities during recessions ......... for example the early 1980s when mortgage rates increased to around 20% along with major increases in employment. We never once thought of the UK or the US ......... we did seriously consider Australia or NZ in addition to moving elsewhere in BC or Canada and starting our own business. That could have been great "fun" in a recession!!
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Old Sep 10th 2017, 11:53 pm   #35
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

I think the comparing thing is a natural process that you go through at first as you settle in (for many people).

Personally, I think it's a manifestation of culture shock which most of us go through to a greater or lesser degree.

When you move, at first, everything is "wonderful"

Then many people become somewhat negative and compare everything (negatively) to the country they came from.

Finally, most people come to terms with the differences and I suspect that's when the comparing becomes minimal.

The Canadian government knows about it and writes this in relation to Canadians living abroad but it applies both ways:

https://travel.gc.ca/travelling/livi.../culture-shock

I think the last point about avoiding idealizing what it's like "back home" is important.
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Old Sep 11th 2017, 12:36 am   #36
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

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I realised that!!

But too many people seem to arrive over here with the expectation that it will be another but better version of the UK, and never seem to come to terms with it.

50 years after leaving the UK, I have to say that a) I have never felt homesick for the UK, b) after the first year, I have very rarely compared here with there, c) I have never wanted to return to live in the UK and have preferred to spend holidays in elsewhere.

Once or twice over those years, we have been forced to consider what we would do if OH was fired due to government cutbacks to universities during recessions ......... for example the early 1980s when mortgage rates increased to around 20% along with major increases in employment. We never once thought of the UK or the US ......... we did seriously consider Australia or NZ in addition to moving elsewhere in BC or Canada and starting our own business. That could have been great "fun" in a recession!!
I think the biggest factor is your personality. I'm the type of person who favours the underdog and doesn't like excessive optimism. In the UK, there's a general feeling that life is an uphill struggle, that it's something to get through. Seeing constantly smiling faces, not hearing a complaint or sign of disapproval can be extremely shocking for such a person at first. That camaraderie is a bit lost. Also, seeing things like tipping, not having a pub where you just walk in and sit down to have a drink (wait at a "podium" instead and be given a food (!) menu) can seem a bit bizarre. That said, after 50 years you're probably more used to the Canadian way of life than anything else. The UK isn't bad either - I wouldn't mind going back at all. I've been intensely homesick at times, even though I'm earning probably 10x as much here.
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Old Sep 11th 2017, 3:11 am   #37
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

Inabsentia .........

not sure where you are, but I can assure you that there are pubs in Vancouver where you can walk in and sit down, always have been. Although in the old days, they used to be called Beer Parlours, and the beer was almost literally thrown at you.

If one person at the table ordered a beer, everyone at the table got a new one. I once ended up with 6 very large glasses (over a pint each) lined up in front of me .. and I don't like beer!!

There are now lots of neighbourhood pubs, most of them small or small-ish ............... OH goes to one about 10 minutes walk away. After 3 visits the staff knew him by name.

There's another about 15 minutes away, and another about 20 minutes away.

Then there are all the small brew pubs to be found all over BC


I know there is a brew pub in Halifax that didn't serve any food when we last looked in there (back in mid-2011) .. I'm sure they have many more now.


Of course, it was once a law that food had to be served in every establishment serving alcohol (Beer parlours were different) ......... it was supposed to stop excessive drinking and drunkenness
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Old Sep 11th 2017, 1:34 pm   #38
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

Wow I didnt think that asking a common question as a newbie to Canada would create such a debate but I am actually glad it did!!
It has provided some very interesting reading. Everybody is entitled to their opinion whether its useful or not.
I am not complaining about Canada and you are right I did make the choice to move. These are the facts. However as others have said it is only natural to compare. I intend to take on the culture/way of life etc and try to fit in that is a given. For the minute though we are just trying to find that niche area which suits our families interests and comforts etc.
I have no doubt that Canada is a great country but as it is so vast we are still very much in the awe stage and constantly trying to plan everything before finally settling down.
We are currently renting which gives us flexibility and also on our way to achieving P.R.
I hope that once this comes through it presents us with the opportunity to fine tune our careers and possibly location.
Make no mistake the Canadian government does not make the process straightforward and I agree with that as it tests the resolve of the applicants. I wish the U.K protected their borders better!!
Also it takes a huge financial investment to make the move and I think this also is proff that unless you are serious about moving and wanting to adapt then dont bother.
My final point is that whilst we have made the move I will never lose my heritage and will always be a true Ulster Scot living in Canada.

Regards

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Old Sep 11th 2017, 1:46 pm   #39
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

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Wow I didnt think that asking a common question as a newbie to Canada would create such a debate but I am actually glad it did!!
It has provided some very interesting reading. Everybody is entitled to their opinion whether its useful or not.
I am not complaining about Canada and you are right I did make the choice to move. These are the facts. However as others have said it is only natural to compare. I intend to take on the culture/way of life etc and try to fit in that is a given. For the minute though we are just trying to find that niche area which suits our families interests and comforts etc.
I have no doubt that Canada is a great country but as it is so vast we are still very much in the awe stage and constantly trying to plan everything before finally settling down.
We are currently renting which gives us flexibility and also on our way to achieving P.R.
I hope that once this comes through it presents us with the opportunity to fine tune our careers and possibly location.
Make no mistake the Canadian government does not make the process straightforward and I agree with that as it tests the resolve of the applicants. I wish the U.K protected their borders better!!
Also it takes a huge financial investment to make the move and I think this also is proff that unless you are serious about moving and wanting to adapt then dont bother.
My final point is that whilst we have made the move I will never lose my heritage and will always be a true Ulster Scot living in Canada.

Regards

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Old Sep 11th 2017, 1:55 pm   #40
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

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Clearly you have never dealt with the British immigration system!
+1. I think it's tougher for Canadians to move to the UK than the other way around.
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Old Sep 11th 2017, 2:14 pm   #41
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

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I think the biggest factor is your personality. I'm the type of person who favours the underdog and doesn't like excessive optimism. In the UK, there's a general feeling that life is an uphill struggle, that it's something to get through. Seeing constantly smiling faces, not hearing a complaint or sign of disapproval can be extremely shocking for such a person at first. That camaraderie is a bit lost. .
Good observation.
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Old Sep 11th 2017, 9:36 pm   #42
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

I wish the U.K protected their borders better!!

Yeah, that made me laugh...as a Canadian I spent about 5000 pounds and it was 10 years before I got leave to remain in the UK. And that was being married to a Brit!

My husband fills out some forms, pays $1000 and gets Canadian PR from day one.

If you do it properly, and you are non EU, the UK is very hard to immigrate to - despite what the Daily Fail proclaims.
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Old Sep 12th 2017, 2:38 am   #43
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

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I think the biggest factor is your personality. I'm the type of person who favours the underdog and doesn't like excessive optimism. In the UK, there's a general feeling that life is an uphill struggle, that it's something to get through. Seeing constantly smiling faces, not hearing a complaint or sign of disapproval can be extremely shocking for such a person at first. That camaraderie is a bit lost. Also, seeing things like tipping, not having a pub where you just walk in and sit down to have a drink (wait at a "podium" instead and be given a food (!) menu) can seem a bit bizarre. That said, after 50 years you're probably more used to the Canadian way of life than anything else. The UK isn't bad either - I wouldn't mind going back at all. I've been intensely homesick at times, even though I'm earning probably 10x as much here.
I have a friend that moved from the UK shortly after we did. For the first 2 years she hated it here, feeling much the same way as you about the excessive cheerfulness. After 2 years she went back to the UK for a visit, when she returned she said she was never going back as she couldn't cope with the miserable people over there that did nothing but complain. She is now very happy here. Sometimes it takes a while to adjust to a different way of looking at things. By the way if you want to see complaints here or signs of disapproval go to a child's hockey game - needs to be one of the more competitive leagues with kids say about 10 - 12 years old. It's quite enlightening.
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Old Sep 12th 2017, 11:37 am   #44
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hi Farmboy, if i recall correctly we moved over around the same time. We moved from N Ireland to Newfoundland in Nov 16, so our 1 year anniversary is approaching, but we are more excited about a trip home in 5 weeks, where I intend to gorge myself silly on all the good food I miss from home- that has been a big manifestation of my homesickness! I certainly have a new appreciation for the fertile soils of Ulster and all my farming relatives Cue celtic music in my head as I get all nostalgic... While I cannot advise you, I am struck by some of our similarities. It was my idea to move, and my hubby didn't get work until we were here 6 months; but getting him into a routine and out of the house helped him immensely. We also considered that if he couldn't get work, that he'd volunteer.

My way of dealing with it all is summed up in one word; acceptance.
I simply accept that at times i am homesick. I now accept if I'm feeling miserable and have "i hate it here; NI is so much better, I'm going home" moments. I accept that I have highs and lows; one day missing home, next day feeling estatic and priveledged to be having this experience. But I have come to realise I just accept what I'm feeling and it passes- sometimes I feel a bit crazt tbh, but realise it's part of the process!

I also do a lot of comparing, "the comparison stage", so I accept it for what it is- about making a transition from home to here. But I'm realising that over time, I'm doing it less and less... in some respects lol. I'm lamenting less about the price of milk, fruit and veg, quality of food, potholed roads etc; The shock is wearing off! ( I've no kids so cannot comment on schools).

I really struggle on holidays, missing family and friends, griping that I don't want/need 'surrogate' friends to replace those back home, but I appreciate the offers of friendship (with limits) that have come my way. I did have some really tough times- I've endured 3 chest infections in the first 4 months of arrival alongside a hectic work schedule. I was always sick over a holiday; Christmas, St Patrick's Day, and Labour Day. I'm confident I'll avert Thanksgiving as we are flying home that day. If not sick I actively try and do something nice/touristy to take my mind off things- or alternatively drink copious amounts of wine and skype/facetime everyone on my contact list! I accept these are my coping mechanisms and for the most part, very enjoyable- (that's my justifcation for the wine).

My continuing acceptance is that I have to endure some negatives of missing stuff and people, in order to experience some positives- fabulous winters with snow up to my armpits and all the new experiences that Newfoundland brings.

I had a visit from my parents in June so that was a great uplift, so I try to encourage visitors (who will bring me goodies in their suitcases). Knowing that I have choices helps me settle a bit more. I accept that I chose to be here and remind myself of the reasons why, (although I also left a good life/ country- I didn't come here for a better life per se, just a new experience). I am also consoled by the thought that i can also choose to go home, if i wish. That helps preserve my sanity too. I have also built in the caveat that this doesn't have to be forever; and that I am not trapped here. I will give it 3 years, review then and decide. In the meantime I choose to roll with the bad days and embrace the good days, all the while accepting this as a great (sometimes chaotic) adventure. I also accept that I will always really really really miss sausages and N Irish chinese food lol
<Waves to fellow person stuck on the Rock>

Useful advice: Sobeys in Paradise. Salt & Pepper Sausages. Best I've found in 13 years of living here. They make 'em in house. Not seen them in any other Sobeys.

Less useful comment: Sticker shock on the price of fresh veggies & fruit here doesn't go. It only gets worse when you travel back to UK or mainland Canada. The Supply Chain to get stuff here is long and expensive so it's something you have to learn to live with.

If you need any British company, I know a few who are can be usually talked into a beer or coffee. Well beer definitely.
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Old Sep 12th 2017, 12:07 pm   #45
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Default Re: Advice on Adjusting in Canada in year 1

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Useful advice: Sobeys in Paradise. Salt & Pepper Sausages. Best I've found in 13 years of living here. They make 'em in house. Not seen them in any other Sobeys
Certainly not seen them in any of the three Sobeys we use here.

But they do a very nice "Spanish inspired" (so probably not the real thing) Chorizo. Far better than the Italian ones everywhere. It almost makes up for the absence of Cumberland Sausage.
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