Marramgrass

Beyond the wall.

College and University

Things have happened. Exciting and surprising things, you could say. Six weeks ago we upped sticks and left Northern Ireland for Toronto—just for a year, but still. My wife is working as a clinical research fellow in the cancer hospital here, so we've all come along for the ride!

There are worse things; so far this seems like a great place to live. There's loads to do, the boys are having a ball, and we're enjoying the big city way of life (I took the photograph at the top of this post while walking round to pick them up one evening last week). It's all made a bit easier by my employer being happy for me to work remotely for the year. Decent internet access and a laptop mean I can carry on doing my thing, so that was one less worry.

Things we've noticed north of the Wall:

  • The stereotype of politeness and helpfulness seems to be competely based in reality, whether on the subway, in the shops or on the phone to the revenue service.
  • We're told it'll get cold in the winter, but the summer is much more summery than any Belfast season.
  • Figuring out how to cross the street, or where to buy stamps, can take longer than you'd think.
  • Chocolate in the UK is much better than chocolate in North America.
  • The rest of the food here, though. Wow.
  • Except maybe poutine. Curds? Nope.
  • Good public transport is good. (Compare, again, Northern Ireland.)
  • Real weather. Oh, my.

There'll be more discoveries, I'm sure. We'll be back in NI next summer but, for now, We All Go To Canada.