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Life's Turning-Points

Life's Turning-Points

Old Jun 21st 2022, 8:34 pm
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Default Life's Turning-Points

I emigrated to Canada in 1965, after spending the preceding two years in various parts of Europe and the Middle East, and having left my homeland of Australia in 1963. In '65, I was on my way back to Oz, and landing in Canada was a fluke, because I'd always promised myself I'd work in the USA somewhere and then go back to my employers in Brisbane. But a moment of impatience at the US Consulate in London changed my life. What happened was this...

In the US Consulate I was given a ticket and told to sit down and wait to be called for an interview. Ten minutes later Number 24 was called for his interview, and my number was 103. Cripes! How to fill in the time? I know: why don't I go to the Canadian Consulate down the road and get a ticket from them? Then at least I'll have two tickets in the game. As it happened, their waiting room was empty and they interviewed me then and there. I phoned the only person I knew in Canada - my former travel companion in the Middle East, who was staying with her married sister in Peterborough - and she met me off the plane in Toronto.

We never did make it back to Australia, except on holidays. After a bit of argy-bargy she and I married in "The Big TO" sixteen months later. Still on our way back home, we side-tracked to Nassau, Bahamas. I lucked into a job with one of the trust companies there and learned how easy it was to save money when there's no Income Tax. Nassau was our first "offshore tax haven"; we later lived in Vanuatu in the Pacific and Cayman in the Caribbean. That impatience in London changed our entire lives.

I have posted about my early life in the Australian equivalent of this "Maple Leaf" section (it's called "the Barbie"), and about our life in Vanuatu in the "Rest of the World" section. My first 24 years in Oz, and three and a half in Vanuatu in 1972-5) have their stories, of course, and there were other "turning points". But our lives as permanent expats, started with the 18 months in Canada, and we never forgot the debt we owed to that country.

"Life's turning-points" are something we all encounter, and it would surely be interesting to hear from other BE members - starting with those who contribute to The Maple Leaf. Any offers?
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Old Jun 21st 2022, 9:21 pm
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Default Re: Life's Turning-Points

“We have two lives, and the second begins when we realize we only have one.”

― Confucius


A small mole on my leg turned into a life turning point for me. It doesn't matter how much money you have, you cannot buy time. Thank goodness for Doctors, medicine and scientists.
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Old Jun 22nd 2022, 2:36 am
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Default Re: Life's Turning-Points

Ummm. For anybody put off visiting the Australian section by its title, "The Barbie", I should have mentioned that it has nothing to do with Barbie-and-Ken! Oh my god, no! A barbie in Australia is a barbecue - an iconic gathering in somebody's backyard whenever the weather's decent. We have them here in the Caribbean, and you probably have them in all parts of Canada. I don't actually recall any from my time there, but I'll put that down to a failing memory.

And the title of my thread there "Why so few shrimps on the Barbie?" was a reference to the reluctance of Australian immigrants to post to the "chat" site. They must be a lot more reserved crowd than the Canadian ones! This Maple Leaf is jumping, by comparison. Mind you, maybe a lot come here expecting a chat about the NHL team. (Which I remember very well from my time in Toronto, by the way! Sigh. Those were the days, my friends.)
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Old Jun 22nd 2022, 9:58 am
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Default Re: Life's Turning-Points

Originally Posted by Gordon Barlow View Post
Ummm. For anybody put off visiting the Australian section by its title, "The Barbie", I should have mentioned that it has nothing to do with Barbie-and-Ken! Oh my god, no! A barbie in Australia is a barbecue - an iconic gathering in somebody's backyard whenever the weather's decent. We have them here in the Caribbean, and you probably have them in all parts of Canada. I don't actually recall any from my time there, but I'll put that down to a failing memory.

And the title of my thread there "Why so few shrimps on the Barbie?" was a reference to the reluctance of Australian immigrants to post to the "chat" site. They must be a lot more reserved crowd than the Canadian ones! This Maple Leaf is jumping, by comparison. Mind you, maybe a lot come here expecting a chat about the NHL team. (Which I remember very well from my time in Toronto, by the way! Sigh. Those were the days, my friends.)
Nothing reserved about them, Most of them have just left the forum for various reasons. A quick browse through the Aus forum will show you how dead it is.
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Old Jun 22nd 2022, 2:24 pm
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Default Re: Life's Turning-Points

Originally Posted by Pollyana View Post
Nothing reserved about them, Most of them have just left the forum for various reasons. A quick browse through the Aus forum will show you how dead it is.
Could be, I guess. But a couple of the earliest responses to my Australian thread hinted at a touch of disenchantment or discouragement. One even hinted that BE might have passed its prime - but you wouldn't know that from this lively Canadian "Maple Leaf" section. It's all go, here!
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Old Jun 22nd 2022, 2:57 pm
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Default Re: Life's Turning-Points

Originally Posted by Gordon Barlow View Post
Could be, I guess. But a couple of the earliest responses to my Australian thread hinted at a touch of disenchantment or discouragement. One even hinted that BE might have passed its prime - but you wouldn't know that from this lively Canadian "Maple Leaf" section. It's all go, here!
It's really not, compared to years ago, it's far quieter.

IIRC there were a couple of members that caused issues in the Oz forums, but it probably would have got much quieter anyway. People just don't really use forums anymore.

Last edited by christmasoompa; Jun 22nd 2022 at 3:23 pm.
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Old Jun 22nd 2022, 4:07 pm
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Default Re: Life's Turning-Points

Originally Posted by christmasoompa View Post
It's really not, compared to years ago, it's far quieter.
People just don't really use forums anymore.
I have found that some do use forums after they have done something then realize they might have been better asking on a forum. Some decisions made can actually be a life turning point as evidenced in the odd Canada Immigration Forum post.
There again when people are told not to believe everything they read on the internet then why would they believe you or me on a forum?
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Old Jun 22nd 2022, 4:13 pm
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Originally Posted by Former Lancastrian View Post
There again when people are told not to believe everything they read on the internet then why would they believe you or me on a forum?
Because we're ace.
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Old Jun 23rd 2022, 7:16 am
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Default Re: Life's Turning-Points

I always felt that forums like BE began to suffer badly when most of us began to access the internet on our phones not our PCs or laptops. It's harder to navigate and reply from a phone. Sad in a way, but the world moves on.

Life-changing moments... aged 19 I got on an overnight bus from Dundee to London to start a student placement job. Arriving at Victoria bus station at 7am I was absolutely terrified. The only thing I wanted to do was put my rucksack back on the bus and go back home. But I didn't. And as soon as I walked out of the bus station into the early morning light of London, I knew I could do it. And I never went home again. (Bit dramatic, I did really, but only to visit )

I learned that nothing grows in the comfort zone.
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Old Jun 24th 2022, 12:31 pm
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In 2000ish when internet dating was still a novelty I responded to a profile for a "crazy Canadian, landlocked in London". That was a life changing moment as it lead to me emigrating with said Canadian in 2004 to part of Canada I'd barely heard of and only visited once in the depths of winter. The other life changing events of course were the birth of my kids in 2009 and 2012 respectively. Sadly, the youngest is also responsible for a life changing moment a little over three weeks ago when she was diagnosed with leukemia. Not all life changing moments are good, but we overcome adversity and fight on.
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Old Jun 24th 2022, 4:11 pm
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Originally Posted by Atlantic Xpat View Post
In 2000ish when internet dating was still a novelty I responded to a profile for a "crazy Canadian, landlocked in London". That was a life changing moment as it lead to me emigrating with said Canadian in 2004 to part of Canada I'd barely heard of and only visited once in the depths of winter. ....
I had a similar turning point in 1998, re online dating, but neither you or I are particularly unusual in that regard here on BE - there are/ were three regular contributors to BE threads (that I knew of) who met their spouse on line, before I met the future Mrs P in 1998.

I guess that most of us have various career/ job application turning points too, but I have a couple of non-voluntary ones. I was two years out of uni when my employer seconded me to a client, originally just for three weeks, but I ended up staying for four years (the client liked me and put me on their payroll after the first year), and along the way was asked to lead an innovative, arguably ground-breaking project that set the course for my career since then. I occasionally wonder what I would be doing today if i hadn't been seconded to that client more than 30 ytears ago.
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Old Jun 24th 2022, 5:23 pm
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Originally Posted by Atlantic Xpat View Post
In 2000ish when internet dating was still a novelty I responded to a profile for a "crazy Canadian, landlocked in London". That was a life changing moment as it lead to me emigrating with said Canadian in 2004 to part of Canada I'd barely heard of and only visited once in the depths of winter. The other life changing events of course were the birth of my kids in 2009 and 2012 respectively. Sadly, the youngest is also responsible for a life changing moment a little over three weeks ago when she was diagnosed with leukemia. Not all life changing moments are good, but we overcome adversity and fight on.
Oh my goodness what awful news for you all. Tough times ahead. Will you be able to get all her treatment locally? I think she had some health problems earlier too. Nest wishes to you all
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Old Jun 25th 2022, 1:03 am
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I am so very sorry to read this. As you may know, my daughter's autism has, in large part, defined my life. I've lived apart from her mother since the 1980s but we remain in close contact. Autism being the demand on caregivers that it is, I've been obliged to support them financially all along. I've made a lot of money along the way. In truth, I wouldn't have bothered for myself, all I really wanted (like Ronnie Scott) was live music and a good car but, when you have a disabled person to support, you have to do it. I, at least, had the advantage that I could stand before a huge audience, think "they won't bite you" and know what it's like when humans do bite you. That's my turning point, when the doctor looked at the tiny child and said "in my view, you are correct to be concerned. I think this is autism though I can't write that down at this age".

Al the best, there's no more to say.
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Old Jun 26th 2022, 6:32 pm
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https://pjmedia.com/columns/david-so...n-age-n1607857
This is a bit off-topic, but... Is anybody else here old enough to remember when NHL goalies didn't wear masks? It was the case in the Canada of my day (1965-67), and they were all admired for their bravery, if not their common sense. I wonder how many of them had any front teeth. Here above is a link to an article on this very topic.
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Old Jun 26th 2022, 11:32 pm
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I remember when cricket batsmen did not wear helmets. This match will always stick in my memory.
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