Sunday, 26 October 2008

Some observations on Canada.

The last few days, we've been doing lots of "everyday" stuff; the kind of things you have to do when you live somewhere. Laundry and the like. And here's some weird things about Canada:

1)Seamus went to get his hair cut, and the hairdresser tried to trim his eyebrows. Is this a Canadian thing or a gay thing?

2)The banks here charge you to have an account. With the accounts we've opened, we're charged $4 a month, and for this we're "allowed" to make only fifteen transactions. After this, we get charged 50cents per transaction. Once we're in Waterton, it's not like we're going to have anywhere to spend money, so we should be ok, but this is still strange.

3)Mobile phones. OH MY GOD CANADA, SORT IT OUT. When every other country seems to have such straightforward mobile phone systems, I have no idea why Canada's remains so confusing. Pay-as-you-go is basically impossible because it's so expensive so, against our better judgements, we are now on contracts. We had to buy new phones because Canadian phones don't use sim cards (my new phone is pink....same as my old phone....). With our contract, we're "allowed" a certain amount of incoming minutes as long as we stay in the Alberta area. If we leave the Alberta area, we have to pay some stupid amount just to receive calls, let alone make them. If we move permanently outside of Alberta, we have to change our numbers as different areas have different phone codes. We have to pay 50cents a month as a sort of emergency-numbers-tax (just in case we need to call 911), plus system access fees, plus works out so expensive, and the fact is we're going to be living and working together and have no Canadian friends, so have these crazy contracts pretty much just for emergencies. I HATE THIS.

4)TAX. You think something's pretty cheap, then they go and slap a load of tax on once you get to the till. I feel this is deceit.

5)It's impossible just to walk into a bar and order your own drinks. Everything is table service. Meaning you have to tip.

6)"Eh!". And now I can't stop saying it either!

Despite these complaints, I am loving Canada and Vancouver more and more. I love the decent recycling system, and how everyone is so nice (probably because they're angling for tips but still), and how you can see mountains from pretty much everywhere, and how there's so much wildlife all over the place, but mainly I love Oreo ice-cream bars.

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