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Observations so far.........

Observations so far.........

Old Jan 7th 2012, 5:34 pm
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Default Observations so far.........

Hello all,
This forum was of great use in the process of spousal immigration (me being the spouse, partner being the Canadian), so I thought I'd post on the site to give something back if you will. Hope it's of some use. If not, er....., sorry.....

Been in T.O (splat bang downtown) for 4 months now. I'm a musician by profession, all my life. In fact I've done this for so long I truly have no employable skills other that being able to play guitar. I'm aware my story may be slightly different to most and not of much practical use, but what the hell....

The way to get work in my game is by going to gigs, jam sessions and anything you can find and meeting others in the game, which translates to spending huge amounts of time in bars and clubs drinking beer and talking to people.
We saved a load of cash before we moved and my better half was fully aware of the fact it would/will take a while to get established, so far so good, started working etc....

Anyways, immigration? Greatest thing I've done on a personal level since I realized wrestling was fake when I was 8. I can't over-state what a positive process it's been so far . Yes it's a stress, yes you have a bad day or 2, but you learn so much about yourself by doing it, and what an adventure to say the least.....

You get out what you put in...
So many posts seem to obsess about what is different or not as good, but surely the whole point is the difference??? If you put the energy into meeting people and hanging out, immersing yourself in the surroundings, it does pay dividends, quicker than you think. Downtown T.O is a welcoming place-if you put yourself out there. If you're shy, reserved or snobby, tbh, people won't be interested in getting to know you.

The inevitable British moan......

Of course there is stuff to moan about, but it ain't a deal breaker....

1) Canada Post. They are the worst company I've ever dealt with. To date, in 4 months, they have lost my PR card, lost the declaration form to say the card had never arrived, lost 2 packages that they tried to deliver and took back to the warehouse.

2) Technology is 5 yrs behind...
Not the Tech, but the infra-structure supporting it. Mobiles (Bell and Rogers are monopolizing cretins, i could start 10 posts on the vitriol and scorn i feel toward them) On-Demand TV services, On-line shopping etc are so behind the curve you won't believe it. The difference in Amazon alone is incredible. Knowing how easy on-line services are in the UK, you will be annoyed by the back step.

3) Customer Service,
I was always told tales of the miraculous steps customers service representatives took to please customers in this part of the world, while not naming companies and individually griping about them, i have to say: CUSTOMER SERVICE IS SH*TE.
Now, I'm aware this is a personal experience. I know I could have had the worst luck in the world, but I've had so many problems with employees not caring at all. I walk into a store trying to drop a thousand dollars (Snow Tires, a Bed, Insurance, Mobile Phone contracts to name a few), and no one seems to care, or give a sh*t. After-sales is even worse, it's a string of people trying to keep their own backside's out the firing line.

The Suburbs Aint for Me....

Personal i know, but you really don't realise how cut off the suburbs are till you get here. You can't do anything without a car. I live Downtown, and honestly, short of a disaster, I won't move. The suburbs seems a giant sprawl of apartment blocks and shopping malls. Many posts talk about the idea of more space etc, but you truly don't realise how isolated you can be COMPARED TO THE UK, just getting groceries if you don't have a car is a mission outside of downtown..., personal I know, but worth a shout...


Things to love about Canada....


1) The weather, i dont care how cold it gets, it's f@$k'in well dry. Thank the lord. I'll take -10 and dry above 3 degree and slight drizzle. I really didn't think I'd care about the weather, but it makes a huge amount of difference to my outlook.

2) This is specific to downtown T.O, but the diversity of shopping/food markets/bars/restaurants is great. So many great places to go.

3) YOU DID IT. You can write pages on what annoys you (see above), but like I started, it's the best adventure you'll ever have, and honestly, if i ever got unhappy, I'd move somewhere new, not back home.

I could fill 30 posts on what I like, or what I've learned, but they're all so personal they won't be of interest.

It ain't gonna be the same, you'll have bad days, you'll hate the most trivial things, but roll the dice and go for it......

Finally, you know you're turning Torontonian when....

you laugh at people going to the wrong exits on the subway...

you begin to hate Tim Horton's because the coffee tastes like boiled Yak's p*ss.

you think -2 is t-shirt weather

you f**kin hate slow walking tourists, who seem to want the whole sidewalk to themselves and their oxygen thieving offspring.....

you think Poutine is fundamentally wrong on all levels...

You realise you're one of the people who won't ever move from Downtown because of all the reasons above....


thanks people, hope it wasn't all bad.
let the cyber blood-letting begin.............
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Old Jan 8th 2012, 9:59 am
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

Thank you for the post! Interesting observations, and I completely agree with your statement about excitement and enriching experience of immigration - I've done it once already - 15 years in the UK and we're planning to move again despite being generally happy here. Although there are some important reasons at the bottom of our decision to immigrate again, some of it, I am sure, is a slight addiction to the thrill of moving to a different land, all the challenges involved, the sense of achievement and abundance of new experiences. Good luck with your new life!
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Old Feb 9th 2012, 10:23 pm
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

A great post - nice to see a well balanced account, written with a sense of humour.

Thanks and all the best for the future!
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Old Feb 10th 2012, 1:35 am
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

Originally Posted by nerdherd
A great post - nice to see a well balanced account, written with a sense of humour.

Thanks and all the best for the future!
+1
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Old Feb 10th 2012, 7:24 am
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

I love it, not sure about the comment on the oxygen thieving offspring of the tourists though... take it you dont have children then
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Old Feb 10th 2012, 9:15 pm
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

Originally Posted by Howefamily
I love it, not sure about the comment on the oxygen thieving offspring of the tourists though... take it you dont have children then
I would guess the OP's comment is meant to be tongue in cheek
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Old Feb 10th 2012, 11:46 pm
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

I couldn't agree more with your post...a very well-balanced view IMHO! Nothing wrong with stating a few of the more negative aspects of being here - we'd all be lying if we said there was nothing we didn't like (ahem, see Negative Thread)

Despite hiccups and the odd bad day, it's been the best thing we've ever done too. Long may that continue for you (and for us too)
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Old Feb 12th 2012, 3:05 am
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

The 'oxygen thieving offspring' was meant to be a joke, and yeah, I don't have kids. It was more about people not sharing the sidewalk, even when they can see you coming, and make no effort to create space. Simple things eh?

As a follow up, I have already caught myself TWICE saying 'Eh' at the end of a sentence without a hint of sarcasm.

Worrying times.

Also Sarcasm is a no here. Although people claim to understand and enjoy sarcastic humour, they really don't.
It's interesting comparing Facebook. I put up a comment or photo. Canadian friends: positive, encouraging. British Friends: Take the P@ss on a Chronic level. Viscously attack, the way i always would. It's a generalization, but you get the idea....
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Old Feb 12th 2012, 4:10 am
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

Originally Posted by whosgarethparry
.

I could fill 30 posts on what I like, or what I've learned, but they're all so personal they won't be of interest.

thanks people, hope it wasn't all bad.
let the cyber blood-letting begin.............
I wish you would fill 30 posts - most enjoyable and informative. Apart from the fact that I am tone deaf, I'm quite jealous I'm not a musician - I can think of worse ways of integrating into my new community than propping up the bar with a beer!

Are you starting to get work now?
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Old Feb 12th 2012, 4:37 am
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

Yeah things are starting to move a little work wise. Jan/Feb is 'off season' so just waiting for the scene to fire up again. Thanks for asking!!

So much to love and hate in equal measures you kinda got have a sense of humour about it all, or at least try.
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Old Feb 13th 2012, 12:13 pm
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

Originally Posted by whosgarethparry
Finally, you know you're turning Torontonian when....

you laugh at people going to the wrong exits on the subway...

you begin to hate Tim Horton's because the coffee tastes like boiled Yak's p*ss.

you think -2 is t-shirt weather

you f**kin hate slow walking tourists, who seem to want the whole sidewalk to themselves and their oxygen thieving offspring.....

you think Poutine is fundamentally wrong on all levels...

You realise you're one of the people who won't ever move from Downtown because of all the reasons above....


thanks people, hope it wasn't all bad.
let the cyber blood-letting begin.............
These two things also apply if you are an immigrant to BC, as far as I am concerned anyway!

Gigs, jam sessions and open mikes etc are how I am meeting Canadians as well.
It is an experience, you are right there but whether the type of person we are meeting at these events is typical of the majority is up for debate.
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Old Feb 13th 2012, 12:58 pm
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

i agree, it is a select group of people we are meeting. Musical/Art types are never representative of the general population, but I've always made my living from Music, so I guess these are the people I'll be hanging out with anyways................
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Old Feb 14th 2012, 2:05 pm
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

What a wonderful post, although we are not Suburb people i can fully relate to everything.
Another pet hate perhaps?? when you're in a store and you hear some whining Brit you try not to sound British in case you get associated with them....I actually pretended to be French when some whine bag from Leeds started moaning about Canadian way of life in a store!!

Anyway good luck! We're approaching a year on the 17th....

Keith.
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Old Feb 15th 2012, 3:40 am
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

Originally Posted by KeithSonja
What a wonderful post

Agree fully
Another pet hate perhaps?? when you're in a store and you hear some whining Brit you try not to sound British in case you get associated with them....I actually pretended to be French when some whine bag from Leeds started moaning about Canadian way of life in a store!!
Keith.
You made me blush with that one! I have that particular tee shirt in every colour combination

No, Helcat surely the Tim Horton's horrors and the dread of Poutine MUST be universal?....aren't they..
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Old Feb 15th 2012, 3:48 am
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Default Re: Observations so far.........

I actually pretended to be French when some whine bag from Leeds started moaning about Canadian way of life in a store!!

From Yorkshire did you expect anything less Was he complaining that there was no place to leave his whippet or greyhound?
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