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Old Aug 22nd 2017, 4:27 am   #1
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Default 50 and 49 years ago

...... on August 22, we landed at JFK in NY, and almost immediately transferred to a flight to Montreal, arriving there just before midnight for the last 3 days of our honeymoon at Expo 67.


49 years ago, on August 22, we crossed into Canada at Peace Arch without any papers to prove our legitimacy! There had been a long postal strike so no documents had reached us. The 2 UK visitors we had with us had all necessary papers.

The CBSA officer was very genial, basically said "we're used to this", told OH to go to his new place of employment because documents would have been sent there, and waved us through.

No official letters at employment place, so back to the border 2 days later, parked on the Canadian side and walked into the border office.

Another very nice genial CBSA officer walked into the back office and returned with an envelope addressed to us, waiting in the Out Box for mail pick-up.

He opened it, took out the little white strip that was then supposed to be stapled in your passport and handed one to each of us but did not staple them.


December 1973, we swore allegiance to the Queen in an office in downtown, paid $10 each, and paper work was sent off for us to become Canadian citizens. OH received his certificate in February 1974 and I received mine on March 10 1974
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Old Aug 22nd 2017, 2:02 pm   #2
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

Nice story.

According to Bank of Canada inflation calculator, $10 in 1973 is $55.02 in 2017.

Bit different to the current $630
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Old Aug 22nd 2017, 3:43 pm   #3
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

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Originally Posted by scilly View Post
...... on August 22, we landed at JFK in NY, and almost immediately transferred to a flight to Montreal, arriving there just before midnight for the last 3 days of our honeymoon at Expo 67.


49 years ago, on August 22, we crossed into Canada at Peace Arch without any papers to prove our legitimacy! There had been a long postal strike so no documents had reached us. The 2 UK visitors we had with us had all necessary papers.

The CBSA officer was very genial, basically said "we're used to this", told OH to go to his new place of employment because documents would have been sent there, and waved us through.

No official letters at employment place, so back to the border 2 days later, parked on the Canadian side and walked into the border office.

Another very nice genial CBSA officer walked into the back office and returned with an envelope addressed to us, waiting in the Out Box for mail pick-up.

He opened it, took out the little white strip that was then supposed to be stapled in your passport and handed one to each of us but did not staple them.


December 1973, we swore allegiance to the Queen in an office in downtown, paid $10 each, and paper work was sent off for us to become Canadian citizens. OH received his certificate in February 1974 and I received mine on March 10 1974
Then international terrorism came into being and fudged all this pleasantness up. The officers had no guns in those days.
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Old Aug 23rd 2017, 4:36 pm   #4
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

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Originally Posted by plasticcanuck View Post
Then international terrorism came into being and fudged all this pleasantness up. The officers had no guns in those days.
Possibly the lack of guns had something to do with the lack of international terrorism (which really still doesn't exist in Canada, or, with the glaring exception of 9/11, in the USA) and to do with the general pleasantness of the times.
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Old Aug 24th 2017, 2:46 pm   #5
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

A journey well travelled, congrats scilly!
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Old Aug 24th 2017, 10:39 pm   #6
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

Thanks BristolUK

Thanks not2old!


To add a little to the story .....

...... the department had put OH on the payroll from the beginning of August because they couldn't pay moving costs.

His starting salary was $10,000 ............. about 3x what he had earned in the UK

We had about $100 in our pockets, that and the cheque that OH was given on August 31 had to last us until the end of September (paid monthly in those days) ..... paying for rent + deposit, food, gas etc.

Our initial rent was $137 a month in a concrete highrise (7 storeys plus penthouses). One year later we moved up a floor and to the front to get a view over Vancouver and to the mountains ....... cost was $167 a month

We slept on air mattresses and sleeping bags until a visit to Sears Canada ........ who said we couldn't use our Sears US card but they could exchange it immediately for a Sears Canada card.

That allowed us to buy a bed settee and 2 "tub" chairs. Luckily we had enough cash to get our few possessions out of Bekins storage ......... so we had sheets etc and better kitchen stuff than camp gear. The apartment manager had lent us 3 plastic chairs used around the swimming pool .... so we could return those to him!

We bought a second-hand dining table and 6 chairs in September, a horrid "mushroom" colour, we stripped the paint off, stained and varnished, and ended up with a decent table and set of chairs that are still in use in the basement.


We thought we were really rich, went out often to friends, theatre, etc, and entertained often ............... usually eating spaghetti and meat sauce or casseroles!! That's what everyone in our circle did in those days.

OH had done a road test to get a US drivers license, BC said that was OK but made him do the written test before issuing a BC drivers license.


OH's sister was with us when we arrived here, loved the little she saw of Canada, and emigrated herself in 1970, met her husband and married in 1972. M-i-l never forgave us (especially) me for enticing sis-i-l out here.
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Old Aug 24th 2017, 10:50 pm   #7
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

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Our initial rent was $137 a month in a concrete highrise (7 storeys plus penthouses)...
And PlayGirl for you? It's only fair if OH has Penthouse.
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Old Aug 28th 2017, 6:28 pm   #8
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

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Originally Posted by scilly View Post
Thanks BristolUK

Thanks not2old!


To add a little to the story .....

...... the department had put OH on the payroll from the beginning of August because they couldn't pay moving costs.

His starting salary was $10,000 ............. about 3x what he had earned in the UK

We had about $100 in our pockets, that and the cheque that OH was given on August 31 had to last us until the end of September (paid monthly in those days) ..... paying for rent + deposit, food, gas etc.

Our initial rent was $137 a month in a concrete highrise (7 storeys plus penthouses). One year later we moved up a floor and to the front to get a view over Vancouver and to the mountains ....... cost was $167 a month

We slept on air mattresses and sleeping bags until a visit to Sears Canada ........ who said we couldn't use our Sears US card but they could exchange it immediately for a Sears Canada card.

That allowed us to buy a bed settee and 2 "tub" chairs. Luckily we had enough cash to get our few possessions out of Bekins storage ......... so we had sheets etc and better kitchen stuff than camp gear. The apartment manager had lent us 3 plastic chairs used around the swimming pool .... so we could return those to him!

We bought a second-hand dining table and 6 chairs in September, a horrid "mushroom" colour, we stripped the paint off, stained and varnished, and ended up with a decent table and set of chairs that are still in use in the basement.


We thought we were really rich, went out often to friends, theatre, etc, and entertained often ............... usually eating spaghetti and meat sauce or casseroles!! That's what everyone in our circle did in those days.

OH had done a road test to get a US drivers license, BC said that was OK but made him do the written test before issuing a BC drivers license.


OH's sister was with us when we arrived here, loved the little she saw of Canada, and emigrated herself in 1970, met her husband and married in 1972. M-i-l never forgave us (especially) me for enticing sis-i-l out here.
Great story, thanks for sharing.
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Old Aug 28th 2017, 6:44 pm   #9
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

Just an a little add-on to Scilly's story.
We arrived May 15th, 1966 and after living in a batchelor apartment for six months we moved into a one-bedroom in a brand new building for, like Scilly, $137 monthly on the 8th floor. Included swimming pool, underground garage and a roof garden and a 20 minute public transit ride to downtown Toronto. We thought we'd died and gone to heaven. From a council flat in Glasgow to that was a dream come true, but life was much simpler then, I think anyway.
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Old Aug 29th 2017, 4:12 am   #10
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

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Originally Posted by plasticcanuck View Post
Just an a little add-on to Scilly's story.
We arrived May 15th, 1966 and after living in a batchelor apartment for six months we moved into a one-bedroom in a brand new building for, like Scilly, $137 monthly on the 8th floor. Included swimming pool, underground garage and a roof garden and a 20 minute public transit ride to downtown Toronto. We thought we'd died and gone to heaven. From a council flat in Glasgow to that was a dream come true, but life was much simpler then, I think anyway.

I agree ............. we had never felt so rich in money and life, "died and gone to heaven" describes it perfectly!
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Old Aug 29th 2017, 4:37 am   #11
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

I thought I was the longest BE resident immigrant. Will have been in the US 50 years on Oct 1st 2017.
Use to drive from Seattle to Vancouver regularly with little to no formality at that time.

Came shortly before the British Pound was devalued. So in terms of pounds I made out. Hard to believe but I had never heard of Pizza before I came to the US and never had spaghetti that wasn't from a can(tin).
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Old Aug 30th 2017, 3:57 am   #12
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I thought I was the longest BE resident immigrant. Will have been in the US 50 years on Oct 1st 2017.
Use to drive from Seattle to Vancouver regularly with little to no formality at that time.

Came shortly before the British Pound was devalued. So in terms of pounds I made out. Hard to believe but I had never heard of Pizza before I came to the US and never had spaghetti that wasn't from a can(tin).

Same here!!

I had my first slice of pizza at Expo 67 in Montreal, thought it was awful!!

I'd never had real spaghetti before either, just Heinz spaghetti in tomato sauce.


So, you never came across the much feared female Canada Customs Officer at Peace Arch in the late 60s and early 70s???

She was reputed to give all young men a really hard time when they were crossing into Canada.
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Old Aug 30th 2017, 7:56 am   #13
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

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Same here!!

I had my first slice of pizza at Expo 67 in Montreal, thought it was awful!!

I'd never had real spaghetti before either, just Heinz spaghetti in tomato sauce.


So, you never came across the much feared female Canada Customs Officer at Peace Arch in the late 60s and early 70s???

She was reputed to give all young men a really hard time when they were crossing into Canada.
British food in those days earned it's reputation of being pretty awful. Things have changed for the better now.

No never had a problem crossing the Canadian border, and none of us were US or Canadian citizens.
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Old Aug 30th 2017, 9:33 pm   #14
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

British food certainly was awful in those days.

Little personal anecdote.

In-laws came to stay after we had been here for about 2 years, we had already adopted a new way of cooking, and after they went home, m-i-l told everyone ..........

"Poor xxxxx, yyyyy just cannot cook. We had raw vegetables, partly cooked meats. It's not going to last."


Two years later, they came out again for their daughter's marriage, and were with us for Christmas, she watched OH take brussel sprouts from the serving dish, and commented ............

"Oh, you must really like your vegetables that way. You never used to eat brussel sprouts."

Fast forward another 2 years, and we went back to the UK, stayed with them .......... and she was serving vegetables that were no longer cooked to mush

They never did get to cooking medium meat, let alone medium rare or rare ........ f-i-l wouldn't eat anything but well-done. We nearly got thrown out of one of the top steak houses here when he insisted on well-done steak ........... the maitre d' huffed and puffed, and then went away saying "we will not guarantee your meal, sir"
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Old Aug 30th 2017, 10:40 pm   #15
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Default Re: 50 and 49 years ago

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...f-i-l wouldn't eat anything but well-done...
MIL used to insist on shoe leather style too. We've managed to get her okay with no pink.

Apparently she used to buy those packs for stew (carrots, parsnips and turnip) and throw away the parsnips thinking they were carrots gone bad.
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