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Barbs: Hello from Calgary


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Just wanted to say hello to you all.

We are in Calgary Canada and landed 18 months ago. We used the SAcanada website during our long 3 year wait. Yes 3 years. It was worth the wait though.

Enjoy this new site and good luck to all.

Just wanted to include a photo of Calgary for you.


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Wow..... that is beautiful! I have just spent the past 2 hours on SACanada reading through "why Canada"-very interesting(I mean that respectfully). I am completely fascinated with the different opinions. Hubby surprised me with a ticket (LSD trip) to Vancouver-apparently only intended as a 'plan B' but obviously I am getting all inquisitive now B) . Sort of comparing the 'opinions' of South African's in Canada and those in Oz, but Oz is still my first choice. Maybe because I haven't been to Canada yet? :)

Anyway, thanks :D

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I was at a 21st birthday party about a couple of years ago, munching away on a side plate and got talking to another of the guests at the event.

He turned out to be a Canadian, having married an Australian girl twenty years earlier and they had both lived in Adelaide all that time.

As we were eating strawberries, he mentioned that they can't grow them in the part of Canada that he was from . . . Alberta.

The ground is perma-frost for five months of the year . . . like concrete. . . . too cold for berry fruit to grow, I was told.

As an Australian I wondered . . . . . and I would imagine more than a few South Africans online would also wonder . . . . why anyone would deliberately choose to live on a part of the planet that is like that for FIVE months of each year????

Beautiful it may be.

Warm it ain't!

I like to look out on my garden and see sunlight and parrots on my lawn with the temperature 30 degrees for most days of the year, without six feet of snow covering my lawn and me wearing seven layers of clothes for much of the year. . . . just shorts, T-shirt and sandals.

Horses for courses, I guess.

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There are many of us ex SA people in Canada. One who has started this site.

We chose it because I came over on business and loved it. We live 1 hour from the Rockies. It does get cold but not for 5 months of the year, we are in the middle of winter right now and here is a photo taken of my daughter going to work last weekend. Bob you will see not seven layers of clothing. I will admit we are having a very mild winter.

There is snow for part of winter but in Calgary it does not stay it melts and it may be one foot. Another thing few people out of Canada realize is that the sun shines in Calgary for more than 300 days a year.

We love it here and I just wanted to say hello and enjoy this new site. We got such support from the members of the Canadian version and have also made many friends here through the site.

Once again good luck to you all.

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Barbs ,

thanks for your , very nice , photos : both of Calgary and of your lovely daughter!

Yep , there are , indeed , many ex-SAfricans happy in Canada ;

the ones Down Under don't like to admit , or even consider such possibilities ,

on grounds of a little factor , otherwise known as the craving for permanent summer...

...talk about addictions : to heat , flies , possums , venomous snakes , mozzies...

( only joking , of course! heh , heh )

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We live on Vancouver Island, which is just opposite the city of Vancouver, in the province of British Columbia, and we can grow anything we like here - strawberries, rasberries, even figs and various types of palm trees. The weather here is pretty mild compared to the rest of Canada - it does rain a lot in winter - kind of like an extreme Cape Town - but, summer is fantastic. :P We lived in Calgary for several years, and loved it there too - fabulous in summer, and it's really great to be near the Rockies. :) I am sure, however, that it must be great to experience Australia - I would love to visit one day. :(

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  • 2 weeks later...


Home is where the heart is.

I guess the bloke who told me about Alberta having 5 months of freezing weather hasn't lived there recently, since your daughter looks like most Aussies kids on their way out . . . . no thick layers to save you from the biting cold.

At the end of the day, a place is really only as good as the people from my opinion. You can live in a tropical paradise, but if you are not accepted by the locals then you won't find it easy to stay.

If you enjoy Calgary and have got mates there nowadays, then you're more likely to stay over the coming years I guess.

Thanks for the photo of Calgary too . . . . it's not a small place I notice.

By the way, on looking at a page in my atlas, I notice Canada having quaint Indian names for its towns / cities . . . . . names like Medicine Hat, Moose Jaw, Red River, Kicking Horse.

They just sound like they are lending from nature to an Australian's ear, but then again we have Aboriginal names that must be a bit of a tongue twister for you guys . . . . Yarralumla, Oodnadatta, Toowoomba

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WOW, I really like that first picture. Stunning!

Thanks for sharing.

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Bob-looking at a map of Oz the a while back-I found a spot with a really interesting name:

"Beer Belly Creek".

I rolled on the floor with laughter as I pictured a bunch of guys laying by the creek with their beers, open shirts and big bellies..."Oi mate, what should we call this place?"....."Beer belly.......creek" :lol::lol:

Ok, I have an unusual imagination.....

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Me or Bob?

Well, if it's me.... hubby got me working full time-he's a real 'slave driver' but don't tell anybody :lol::lol:

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hello from Toronto!

When I first arrived here I did wonder why anyone in their right mind would want to live in such a blerry cold city, but after almost thirteen years here, I think I have discovered the reason- there are very few goggas in the winter :) , I do not have to mow the little lawn; I don't have to care if my legs are lily- white or unshaven; I can eat comfort food without guilt, as heck, we need some extra padding to insulate us in the winter! But, best of all, I never feel as cold as I did in my house in Johannesburg - the indoor heating is brilliant and I can keep my house at a comfortable 23C and wear what I like inside. No more freezing cold trips to an icy loo at night or the need for winter pj's! Plus, I do not have to travel far to meet immigrants from every conceivable corner of the globe. This is truly the world in one giant city.

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I guess the bloke who told me about Alberta having 5 months of freezing weather hasn't lived there recently,

Bob, your friend is right. Trust me it is cold for a LOT longer than 5 months of the year in Calgary. However, you do acclimatise but its relative though. When it has been -30C for a week and then turns to -5C, -5C is like heaven and you will be quite happy to walk around in a t-shirt if the sun is shining and there is no wind. Take a look at the average daily temperatures, take note of our summer months June to August, dismal. Of course, we do have some exceptionally hot days, in the 30s but these have been rare in the 5 years I have been here.

Temperature: Temperature: __ Jan __ Feb __ Mar __ Apr __ May __ Jun ___ Jul ___ Aug __ Sep __ Oct __ Nov __ Dec __ Year

Daily Average (°C)__________-8.9 __-6.1 __ -1.9 __ 4.6 ___ 9.8 __ 13.8 __ 16.2__15.6 __ 10.8 __ 5.4__-3.1 __ -7.4 __ 4.1

For the daily highs and lows go to Environment Canada's web site.

Yes, our houses are insulated and we're warm inside. Calgary has a somewhat unique weather sytem of warm winds blowing in occasionally and warming everything up for a few days during the winters. So we often dont have snow on the ground but instead we have brown ugliness everywhere. The snow is much better to look at.

Now I probably sound all negative so let me say, Canada is a great place to live, thats for sure. The only problem I have is the climate. It simply is not great and so long as I no there is a warmer place to live I will never be truly content. Hence we are heading to Aus in August for a year to check it out.

By the way, the picture of Calgary is certainly a great reflection of how beautiful Calgary is but thats Calgary for 3 - 4 months of the year only. The Autumn is very beautiful as the leaves change colours but its always a grim reminder of whatsd to come. Of note, the mountains in the background are about 80 to 100km away. Gives you an idea of how massive they are.

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