The Hess Report


Thursday, April 22, 2004

Canada Revisited

I've had enough comments about my essay on our Canadian vacation last year that I felt obliged to post a follow up. If you've not been reading that long, or you just want to refresh your memory, you can find the original post here.

One Canadian citizen commented via the proxy of one of my friends. Didn't even have the balls to respond for himself (or maybe he just didn't care enough). It went along the lines of "ignorant Americans" and blah blah blah and change my diaper and tell it to John F. Kerry, because I think he actually cares.

Another comment was from Memory!Joy who, when the subject of Canada and vacations came up, stated that "Oh my gosh. You ripped it apart in your blog. You hated it." To that, I can only say, "Did not," and a reread confirms it. While I did have some problems with the trip, there was a disclaimer at the end, and plenty of positive stuff throughout. I will admit, though, that before rereading it, I did kind of have that same impression. So, here's an unqualified statement. Canada can be a nice place to take a vacation. It has some beautiful, incredible country. The people in the tourist areas we visited were uniformly friendly and helpful to a fault. Things were cheap there. Let it not be said that I think it's a bad place to go.

Would I want to live there? No way. I much prefer our system of government. I prefer the warmer climate. But others do not, and I know that millions of people, both native-born and transplants, wouldn't want to live anywhere else.

And finally, what prompted me to write this, was a comment from someone who speaks at least twice as many languages as I do. In my original post, I took a jab at the French for naming the penninsula in Erie "Presque Isle", as it is almost, but not quite, an island. Stupid French people, I said. It turns out that Presque Isle literally means "almost an island." So it seems that at least two people who speak French, both the person who good-naturedly pointed this out to me and the person who named Presque Isle, have a sense of humor. So, duh for me for not speaking French.

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