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floortje in canada

Goodbye Canada

Goodbye Canada, the true North, strong and free. After 7200 kilometres, 4 Canadian provinces, 4 American states, 13 different beds, of which a matt in a tent and a floor, this month of travelling after my semester abroad has come to an end. I have learned a lot during my time in Canada, not only at University, but about the country itself as well...

Oh, America

‘Hey, my name is Steve, I’ll be your waiter for tonight. Where are you from? Is everybody so tall in the Netherlands? Oh on exchange, goood for youuu! What’s your name? Floor? What a wonderful name. A coke? Amazing choice! Just call me if you need something, Floor! Did you enjoy dinner? Perfect, I’m so happy. Have an amazing...

The Canadian bucket list

‘Fear is temporary, regret is forever.’ With that cheesy phrase in mind I decided to go out wearing only leggings, no skirt. Although I have never quite understood that trend – it just looks like you’ve forgotten something – I decided that I should try it while I still could. Because it’s normal here, while in th...

It can’t be that bad

A bit over 12 weeks ago, when I got here, I saw my schedule: classes until April 5th, followed by exams until the end of April. I heard stories about how stressful exam period was, that the library was open 24/7, and always completely occupied. A bit ridiculous, I thought. It couldn't be that bad. And a month of exams, without classes, would gi...

Canadian rokjesdag

Martin Bril famously described it: ‘rokjesdag’ (skirts day). The day (Dutch) women wear skirts for the first time of the year. On this day, often in early spring, people, en masse, run to the beaches and wear their most summery clothes. If you would take a picture on such a day, you would think that it was at least 30 degrees. But actua...

Camp spice

When I looked at my feet, covered in soaked Converses, towing a canoe through the snow, I thought: this is madness. A three-day white water canoeing trip on the Madawaska River in Ontario, still covered with ice, camping in the snow. While everybody else was enjoying delicious Easter dinners. Indeed, why do we do it (speaking for all, and more die...

Proud to be Canadian

Proud to be Canadian

Maybe it is just because I’m taking Canadian politics here and because it has caught my interest, but I have the feeling that Canada – the government and Canadians themselves -   is actively trying to create or influence Canadian national identity. Most of the emphasis is on the difference from America. Especially Canada&rsquo...

The wearing of the green

The wearing of the green

Saint Patrick’s day: ‘a cultural and religious holiday celebrated on the 17th of March. It is named after Saint Patrick, the most commonly recognised of the patron saints of Ireland.’ This quick Wikipedia description isn’t really in line with how I came to see St. Patrick’s day. To be honest, before I came here, I did...

The ‘Caution! Wet floor’-sign effect

‘I accept that, by going on this trip, I may be exposed to the following risks: hypothermia, frostbite, heatstroke, sunburns, exhaustion, bone and joint injuries, head/spinal injuries, burns, bites, stings, falling, environmental illness, allergic reaction, injury from car or traffic accident, winter, rain, hail, or wind storms or other seaso...

Better safe than sorry

I woke up to the sun this morning. It didn’t snow, it looked warm. I thought: ‘It’s such a beautiful day, I won’t need a coat today.’ No, wrong. Big mistake. Going outside without a coat in early March is dangerous in so many ways.   It may look sunny outside, it may even actually be sunny, it may not snow. But ...

Timmie

It wasn't love at first sight. I didn't understand the excitement with which everybody spoke about you. But when everybody insisted, I tried it. I didn't really liked your taste. I wasn't convinced. You were not like the Italians, or the Dutch. Maybe slightly better than the Americans. But I couldn't get around you. You were ev...

Three Dutch girls in a Canadian car

Reading week. Not sure if the university expect us to actually read academic books. We students consider this week a perfect opportunity to take a road trip. Turns out adventure is easier to find than expected. Especially when you’re three Dutch girls in a Canadian car. When we started driving, we found out that we didn't have a GPS in o...

Oh my God, you’re Dutch?!

‘Oh my God, you know what just happened today? … It was just, like, incredible, I can’t believe it, you know’- ‘Ah, that’s soooo exciting, I’m so happy for you.’ And I, overhearing this conversation, get all curious and expect something, indeed, amazing, and ask: ‘Oh my God, what happened?&rsq...

With or without you

On my first day in Canada, I wore a hat with the Canadian flag on it. That wouldn't have been a remarkable - in fact, so many people walk around with gloves with the Canadian flag on it that I start think that the government has given a pair to all citizens - if I were not in Montreal. A friend from there subtly said: ‘Eh, Floor, you don&...

Pragmatism

O, pragmatics. They eat because they are hungry. Why would you spend an evening cooking, if you can just heat something up in the microwave? Don’t you just want to get rid of that hungry feeling? Why would you bother sitting down, if you can just eat while standing up? They get a coffee because they need caffeine. They don’t want to h...

Fries with gravy

‘No, I can eat whatever I want now, I’m taking a double dose of those pills right now.’ She got my interest, the woman who spoke these words on the bus. I turned around, and saw her: not the fittest person I’ve ever seen, to put it gently. This was one of those moments you think: ‘Only in America...’. And yes, I ...

BVO’tje

In this series UCM-student Floortje Rawee (21) writes about her experiences as an exchange student in Kingston, Ontario, Canada at the Queen's University. This week she get's an insight in the Canadian police system.

The little things

In this new series UCM-student Floortje Rawee (21) will write about her experiences as an exchange student in Kingston, Ontario, Canada at the Queen's University. This week she talks about all the little differences between Canada and the Netherlands.