It’s amazing what a difference a year can make. Last year, I was running around Auckland with my Canadian partner in crime as we ensured that Kiwis and Canadians alike celebrated Canada’s birthday with all the gusto it deserved. I won’t confirm or deny the rumours that there may have been an accidental motor-boating of a New Zealand celebrity whose name escapes me now or kissing of babies and eventual poking of eyes of big ass bouncers with the tip of a flag that led to the confiscation of said flag. What I will say is the celebration of Canada Day in the winter was an absolute riot and a good time was had by all.
Fast forward my life a year and here I am on the same day wearing the same t-shirt in a country on the other side of the world. Rumour has it that this is summer but the climate is reminiscent of last year’s winter celebration of Canada Day. I have come to terms with the fact that cottage country weather doesn’t exist where I am but nevertheless, the fact that I’m freezing my tits off makes me less inclined to leave my flat. Regardless, it’s Canada Day so I shake off the desire to call in a duvet day and send a quick message to my Canadian partner in crime from New Zealand before heading off to meet up with my Aussie mate to see what festivities await our future. This year there was a gathering of Canadians at a “Commonwealth” pub which seemed to heavily feature the All Blacks everywhere I looked. A sign of my past and future merging into one or just a sign of where I belong – not sure anymore?
What I am sure of is this year’s celebration was tame in comparison but there was the added bonus of being blessed with things such as Moosehead, Molson, Poutine, and a little Shania Twain blaring on the speakers. I stood there amongst all that is “Canadian” and made polite chit-chat with strangers about the frustrations of being a new arrival in Dublin and was reassured that it doesn’t get better and I’ll just learn to curb my expectations. GREAT…5 years in this country and that’s the best advice you’ve got! Despite the disappointing feedback that I received about Ireland, the number of people who turned up, sang at the top of their lungs, and dressed the part was simply amazing. What I can say about both experiences is that on a day that has all the ingredients to make you start feeling a little homesick, it’s always nice to know that no matter where in the world you are, there’s always going to be a little expat community ready to take you in as one of their own. And to all of you celebrating from all parts of the world – Happy Canada Day!