Oh Canada, how I love you so. With Canada Day just behind us, I’ve decided to dedicate today’s blog post to my favourite country out there… Canada! What makes the hockey-loving, poutine-eating, forever-apologizing people of the North so great? Definitely an abundance of things. Without further adieu, let me share my top eight reasons about why Canada (and the people within) are absolutely fabulous.
8. The humour.
Believe it or not, I’m not the only funny Canadian out there! Canadians should be proud to call some class acts their own, such as John Candy, Mike Myers (who could forget Wayne’s World, or Austin Power’s franchise?), Russell Peters and Jim Carrey (best known for his role in Dumb and Dumber), just to name a few!
7. The people are polite… Like, really polite.
Have you ever been in a rush at the shopping mart, bumped into another person’s cart as you quickly turned a corner, and had them blurt “sorry” at the same time as you, even though it was entirely your mistake? If so, you were probably in Canada. A study done by Queen’s University, (creatively titled “Sorry… I’m Canadian”), reports 90% of Canadians aged 18-25 apologize if a stranger bumps into them! A little politeness goes a long way in my books.
6. The freshwater lakes.
There’s a reason why Northwestern Ontario is referred to as “cottage country”. This photo was taken on Lake Kenora, one of Canada’s more than 3 million lakes… More than any other country out there! In the summer these beautiful lakes (which account for 1/3 of the world’s freshwater supply) are perfect for swimming in, fishing, boating, and attempting to waterski on. Mostly surrounded by lush green forests, the lakes of Canada are definitely a breathtaking view.
5. The food.
What is crunchy, creamy, and cheesy, all at the same time? Poutine. This is a dish that Canadian’s take great pride in (and they should, because it’s absolutely delicious). Said to be developed in Quebec in the 1950’s, this traditional dish of fries, gravy and cheese curds has now taken off into a world of it’s own, with restaurants such as Smoke’s Poutinerie opening up across Canada. Check out their crazy menu here! Sweet maple syrup is another Canadian favourite, as it’s harvested directly from one of the thousands of maple trees that are scattered throughout Canada. The maple leaf is also symbolic, as it’s the image on the Canadian flag!
Canada is one of the most multicultural countries in the world. It is a nation of newcomers. The nation was originally inhabited by Aboriginal people, and the immigration began starting with the French and British colonization in the 17th century… One of the main reasons that Canada has not one, but two, official languages (The other one being French.) As of 2014, Canada is home to more than 200 other mother tongues, including Mandarin, Punjabi, Chinese and Spanish! This is not unlike other countries, who welcome immigrants with open arms. What is unique in Canada though? The unity of the cultures. Every year, a two week-long festival occurs called Folklarama, right here in Winnipeg, Manitoba! Folklarama is the longest largest and longest-running multicultural of its kind in the world, as determined by the International Council of Organizations of Folklore Festivals and Folk Arts (what a tongue twister, eh?). This festival has approximately 50 pavilions, all representing a different culture. I was lucky to meet some of these ambassadors during one of my recent pageant appearances! The festival, which celebrates the diverse cultures in Canada through food, music and dance, is something that definitely makes Canada great.
3. Canada’s hidden patriotism.
Canada is often considered the quiet and likeable neighbours of the United States. While volunteering for the USA-Australia game at this year’s 2015 FIFA Women’s World Cup, a fellow volunteer pointed out how Americans seem much more patriotic than Canadians. I believe that she was incorrect in this. Just because they are not tooting whistles or blowing horns at every chance they get, it in no way means Canadians are any less patriotic! Here I’m pictures handing out treats to children, all decked out in patriotic colours, at this year’s West St Paul Canada Day celebration! Canadians get loud where it counts. If you don’t believe me, see it for yourself. During the 2014 Winter Olympics Men’s gold medal hockey game, my friend Lisa and I were one of the hundreds of Canadians that squeezed into Sharkclub, a downtown Winnipeg sports grill, at 5:30am to watch the magic unfold. Her and I just so happened to be filmed on television as a local news station covered the event!
If you’re Canadian, you know that nothing can beat Tim Hortons. At the age of five it was where you showed your Timbit’s soccer jersey to get a free bottle of peach juice after the game. At the age of 12, it was where your dad took you to warm up with hot chocolate before an evening of skating at one of Canada’s many outdoor hockey rinks. At the age of 19, it’s where you go to get your coffee before you pull your first university all-nighter… The first of many. No matter the occasion, Tim Hortons coffee chain supplies, and will continue to supply, great Canadian memories for all.
You may be wondering, how is extremely cold temperatures one of the things that make Canada great? Well, because of these extremely cold temperatures, many Canadians grew up on the hockey rink. It wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say some started out on skates not even a year after they started walking! What does this do? Create amazing hockey players. Hockey is the game of Canada, and boy are us Canadians proud of it. Currently, just over 50% of National Hockey League players call Canada home. Second in line is the United States, with 25% of NHL players hailing from that country. Oh, and which country holds the highest amount of gold medals for hockey in the Olympics? I’ll let you take a guess.
So, those are my top eight reasons on why Canada is great. Agree? Disagree? Leave a comment below! If you’ve been keeping up to date with my blogging, you know by now that I love traveling. But Canada? You’re the only place I’ll ever truly consider home.