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Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:02 pm
  #31  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by el_richo View Post
Apology accepted
Your welcome......



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Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:08 pm
  #32  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by Editha View Post
Being able to go for a country walk.
I went for a lovely one yesterday, thanks

Pleasant commercial buildings, or at least not unpleasant to look it, not acres of ugly one storey warehouses.
depends entirely on the location, doesn't it. The trading estates of the A303 in Andover are much less attractive than the commercial buildings in Old Montreal, for example.
Electric and phone lines buried underground instead of strung from poles like in a third world country.
or, for example, like much or rural Britain. Utilities are buried in the area where I live here; they are not where my sister lives in the UK.
Well maintained roads.
again, depends entirely on where you are. Roads round here are pretty good.
Cheap(er) food, wide choice, and better quality. Back bacon! Cheese that is affordable! Kippers. Smoked haddock. Fruit cake. Tunnocks teacakes. Candy shrimps. Potted shrimps. Ginger wine. Cheap alcohol.
Kippers and smoked haddock both available in Supertsore hereabouts. Back bacon in many independent butchers/delis. Stones ginger wine in the LCBO. Fruit cake in the oven when OH feels like making it. Sure, good cheese is a little pricier, but there are many ills the Milk Marketing Board is responsible for - just ask a former dairy farmer who's been put out of business by the big industrial operations the MMB espouses. I'd rather have dearer cheese than fewer local dairies.
Absence of gargantuan, fume spewing, pickup trucks.
Not absence, but I'll give you there are fewer in the UK. On the other hand, you don't get fume-spewing Ford Transits to the same extent here.
Population with wide range of cultural references and vocabulary of more than 100 words.
that says more about the company you keep than about Canada in general

Fewer homeless people, and fewer of them drunk or dangerously mentally ill.
that's true, imx, although I have no view on how many are dangerously mentally ill.

Low crime rate.
Really? stats quoted here passim ad nauseam would disagree with you. Crime rates are broadly similar in Canada and the UK.
No shops selling Bowie knives, opening late at night, so you can finish that fight after the pubs close.
I don't get this one at all. Where have you experienced this in either the UK or Canada? Drunken stabbings with a knife recently bought for the purpose are not a fewture of Canadian life I'm familiar with even from news reports.
An efficient, relatively intelligent, relatively uncorrupted police force.
Now I've lost you again. Whose police are you indicating are thick and corrupt - and what is your evidence for either claim? I simply don't recognise this as a characterisation in either country.
Shop assistants who leave you alone to make your own choices.
this depends so much on the particular shop that it's just silly. I would prefer to be asked if I needed help, and be given the opportunity to decline assistance, than be left bewildered by an array of choices with nobody seemingly willing or able to assist.
Weekly shop that takes 1 hr, not 3, if you include the drive and walk round ginormous stores, and is relatively enjoyable experience, compared with exhausting dispiriting slog.
I don't remember the last time I spent more than about 40 minutes on a weekly grocery shop. Maybe an hour, tops, if I go at a peak time and there's a big queue at the till. This is no different from my UK experience.

Libraries relatively crap compared with Canada.
as a consumer of library services both here and in the UK I disagree with this. Library services (certainly in the three boroughs I have most recent UK experience of - Hounslow, Hammersmith & Fulham, and Salisbury) are comparable to those in Toronto or Oakville where I have more recent Canadian exposure).

No granola.
Huh? Where is there no granola? This, like much or your post, is nonsense.

I know it's been said many times before and will probably be said many times again. Parts of Canada are better, or worse, than parts of the UK, in certain respects; vice versa in other respects. Your Canadian experience seems to have been very unpleasant compared to many on here. Whereabouts are you that you have no access to the countryside, smoked fish, reasonable supermarkets, honest coppers, or decent roads?
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:11 pm
  #33  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by dbd33 View Post
There are cat's eyes on a number of roads in Grey County, Grey 14 for example, that's north of 89 and so very much in the snow belt. Perhaps the plough driver leaves a little ridge of snow up the middle of the road, perhaps he jumps our and uses a trowel to tidy around the cat's eyes, or perhaps ploughs and cat's eyes have been compatible for yonks.
What I think it is, as you say "Ploughs and cat eye have been compatable for yonks" Is that road safety isn't very high up anybodys agenda here...

They simply prefer to carsh and pay high insurance rates
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:17 pm
  #34  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by Oakvillian View Post
Utilities are buried in the area where I live here; they are not where my sister lives in the UK. again, depends entirely on where you are.
Oh, come on, dangling wires are the dominant architectural feature of urban Canada. You'd have to go to a shanty in Delhi or Brazil to find somewhere comparably untidy.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:30 pm
  #35  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by gillan85 View Post
It would interesting to know, what are the things you notice most when you return for a visit back to the UK?...Do any instances or events/ reminders confirm that you made the right decision to emigrate to Canada... Please share.
What a timely thread, as I just came back from a business trip to the UK.

Bloody hate the place, and this was the first time I've been there in three years and it was worse than I remember which takes some doing.

The traffic is appalling and I was rapidly getting stressed, there are too many people. I was standing outside the Bullring in Birmingham and I started to suffer from claustrophobia even though I was outside, all the people around me made me feel ill.

And really we have this subject of the TV over and over again, without question the TV is better here. No doubt remains in my mind on that topic.

The basic problem with the UK is that it is too crowded, streets and streets of tiny houses with too narrow streets overflowing with traffic and you get to pay 20% VAT, etc. for the privilege of living there.

Never moving back, ever. The only possible advantage of living there is that the NHS is somewhat better than AHCIP, and I'd rather die here than suffer a lingering death there.

Bizarrely I had some craving for Tesco sandwiches, cured myself of that delusion pretty quickly.

And for ages I've been saying that the food is better in the UK than it is here, think I've made a mistake on that score. I went into Waitrose and yeah there definitely is more esoteric stuff that you would never find here but for your average day-to-day shopping I don't think there is that much difference anymore. The main difference is you can go into Tesco Xtra and get everything (or rather suffer with their sausage rolls etc. which are mainly rolls and no sausage) in one go, whereas in Calgary you have to go to more than one shop. But in fairness Calgary is a city of a million people, rather than this huge metroplex in the UK of millions of people so you would expect that the food choice would be narrower.

I'm glad I went because before I was certain I had made the right decision, now I am absolutely certain that I did.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:38 pm
  #36  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by Editha View Post
Cheap(er) food, wide choice, and better quality. Back bacon! Cheese that is affordable! Kippers. Smoked haddock. Fruit cake. Tunnocks teacakes. Candy shrimps. Potted shrimps. Ginger wine. Cheap alcohol.
I can get back bacon at Canadian superstore/Loblaw's. It's not bad either. I don't think food is cheaper in the UK, maybe certain things but I went shopping at Tesco's when I was there and it was more expensive than the total I usually pay here for a week's worth of shopping.

I can generally find everything in Calgary, because there are so many British people here, but it can be a bit of a hunt sometimes. Also I've found since I've lived here the supermarkets have improved.

A lot of it is just getting the hang of knowing where to shop and what things are called, for example Fox's biscuits are sold under the President's Choice brand here at CSS/Loblaw's.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:39 pm
  #37  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by dbd33 View Post
Oh, come on, dangling wires are the dominant architectural feature of urban Canada. You'd have to go to a shanty in Delhi or Brazil to find somewhere comparably untidy.
I always assumed this to be an issue of convenience and that Canada knew what it was doing when it came to accessing the various wires above ground rather than digging through several feet of snow and into frozen ground.

Allowing, of course, for the reverse of overhead lines subjected to being brought down.

I did a little googling and I read that power outages happened more often with lines above ground, but they were of shorter duration than when the lines were underground.

Presumably because repairs can be made more quickily above ground.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:43 pm
  #38  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by Steve_ View Post
And really we have this subject of the TV over and over again, without question the TV is better here. No doubt remains in my mind on that topic.
You know that you're in a minority of one, don't you? The BBC is better because it doesn't have adverts and because it shows the episodes of series in the order of the plot. You can have all the advert suppresion and episode reordering gadgets you want but these are clear advantages.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:48 pm
  #39  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by Steve_ View Post
in Birmingham
That's your fundamental mistake right there.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 4:55 pm
  #40  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

The BBC is not better, and for one thing their budget has been cut massively and there are ever more repeats on. At the end of the day the BBC is some small subset of channels now. If you don't like ads just use DVR and FF through them, you still have to do that with 90% of UK channels anyway.

I think this is what is referred to as the "telescoping effect" by researchers, you remember things in the past by remembering all the good things and not all the bad things over an extended period of time. If in fact in the past UK TV ever was better than Canadian TV it isn't now.

The only things I thought were somewhat better than in Canada were some of the panel shows like Have I Got News For You and QI which admittedly are funnier than say, The Rick Mercer Report. But overall the TV was dire, I rarely watch movies but in the UK that was all I could find to watch with the exception of the aforementioned two shows and An Idiot Abroad which is on here albeit later on in the year.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 5:10 pm
  #41  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by Steve_ View Post
The BBC is not better, and for one thing their budget has been cut massively and there are ever more repeats on. At the end of the day the BBC is some small subset of channels now. If you don't like ads just use DVR and FF through them, you still have to do that with 90% of UK channels anyway.

I think this is what is referred to as the "telescoping effect" by researchers, you remember things in the past by remembering all the good things and not all the bad things over an extended period of time. If in fact in the past UK TV ever was better than Canadian TV it isn't now.

The only things I thought were somewhat better than in Canada were some of the panel shows like Have I Got News For You and QI which admittedly are funnier than say, The Rick Mercer Report. But overall the TV was dire, I rarely watch movies but in the UK that was all I could find to watch with the exception of the aforementioned two shows and An Idiot Abroad which is on here albeit later on in the year.
Not really all that convinced by this TV comment. In Canada there are umteen movie channels and they generally just re-run a handful of movies such as Under Seige, Rocky and Top Gun.

Away from the fact that more re-run movies are shown in Canada along with alot more adverts the news here is somewhat devoid of what is actually going on outside of the province.

It amazes me how little Canadien's know about political and world affairs of the last twenty years.

I do feel for you having to compare Calgary and Birmingham on both counts.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 5:14 pm
  #42  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by Steve_ View Post
I think this is what is referred to as the "telescoping effect" by researchers, you remember things in the past by remembering all the good things and not all the bad things over an extended period of time. If in fact in the past UK TV ever was better than Canadian TV it isn't now.

I gave up on Canadian TV years ago so, were I subject to the "telescoping effect", it would favour Canadian TV. Do Canadian channels all have advertisements? Are there channels in the UK that do not?
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 5:43 pm
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by JamesM View Post
Not really all that convinced by this TV comment. In Canada there are umteen movie channels and they generally just re-run a handful of movies such as Under Seige, Rocky and Top Gun.

Away from the fact that more re-run movies are shown in Canada along with alot more adverts the news here is somewhat devoid of what is actually going on outside of the province.

It amazes me how little Canadien's know about political and world affairs of the last twenty years.

I do feel for you having to compare Calgary and Birmingham on both counts.
On the subject of world knowledge, I was intrigued at the cinema this weekend watching the previews as to how many people would be aware of and interested in the following movie, albeit starring a 'star', outside of those of us who lived through the bitch's period of office and just wanted to check whether she was dead yet ?

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1007029/

Last edited by Tangram; Oct 24th 2011 at 5:50 pm.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 5:45 pm
  #44  
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Just returned from a 10 day dash around Scandinavia and Netherlands, with a brief weekend pit stop in the UK. Yes, it's more crowded/greener/the beers better/sunnier etc etc. But what really struck me was the apparent social and sartorial acceptability of wearing brown shoes with grey or black suits (and to mix languages) dress pants. When did that happen then?
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 5:49 pm
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Default Re: Your observations when visiting UK from Canada !

Originally Posted by Atlantic Xpat View Post
Just returned from a 10 day dash around Scandinavia and Netherlands, with a brief weekend pit stop in the UK. Yes, it's more crowded/greener/the beers better/sunnier etc etc. But what really struck me was the apparent social and sartorial acceptability of wearing brown shoes with grey or black suits (and to mix languages) dress pants. When did that happen then?
Oh gawd, what IS the world coming to.... brown shoes and a dark suit ? TUT.
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