It’s all a numbers game.
It has been 11,750,400 seconds, 195,840 minutes, 3,264 hours, or 4 months and 15 days (minus a few days that I spent in Vancouver for work and a week back in the UK earlier this month for my best friend’s wedding) since I left the UK to move to Toronto, in search of something new, something unknown and more importantly something, well…. exciting.
When I left the UK I had originally planned to post weekly updates and photos for family and friends back home; partly to re-assure them that I’m still alive and partly in the hope that they could share my adventure with me.
However circumstances (read: awesome new job, chaotic but incredible social life and the on-going hunt for somewhere to live) have distracted me a little more than I had hoped, and I am only now getting to a point where I am going to force myself to create the time to document the finer points of “My big fat Canadian adventure” also known as my-life-as-I-now-know-it. If I don’t do it now, I probably never will, so here goes!
What an adventure it has been so far….
Within my first week, I had (among other things):
1.) Travelled nearly 6000 miles across 3 countries, 2 continents and arrived in 1 amazing new city,
2.) Spent 2 hours in line at immigration and learned that although Canadians are super nice, you never, ever and I do mean EVER mess with immigration.
Long-story, short: someone who originally started way behind me in line tried to jump to the front. This was a very BAD idea. Lots of yelling and one missed flight later, he managed to increase his wait time from about 2 hours to 4.
Trust me, it’s not worth it.
3.) Offered, accepted and started an awesome new job at OgilvyAction,
4.) Spent the week as a volunteer photographer for Social Media week Toronto taking part in some phenomenal photo-shoots across the city (which helped immensely in getting to grips with the city transit system and generally find my bearings) and met hundreds of amazing new people (more details and lots of photos in another post),
5.) Moved into my temporary (intended to be 1 month, turned out to be 5) home with my friend Rachel, who has been all kinds of awesome to me since I arrived,
6.) Made awesome, wonderful and did I mention awesome new friends,
7.) Managed to get a little lost on the TTC (Toronto Subway) – but only once,
8.) Discovered that despite months of preparing, planning and packing that nothing prepares you for actually “being here” but that that is actually a good thing,
9.) Had lots of Skype calls and Whatsapp chats with family and friends back home to let them know that I’ve arrived safely, am surviving the (albeit very mild this year) Canadian winter, and that they do not need to worry (although I know they will),
10.) Discovered (and been quite vocal at my annoyance) that you cannot buy alcohol in Supermarkets, Convenience stores, petrol stations etc in Toronto (well, the whole of Ontario for that matter) – you have to go to the Liquor Control Board of Ontario or LCBO and that although there are a LOT of them, they are not always in the most obvious locations, and they shut early (compared to what I am used to in the UK).
Not bad for my first week in a new city (and country) eh?