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December 22, 2015

Oh Canada!

Have I mentioned how much I love Canada? I really do love Canada -- and have for quite some time. Don and I used to vacation there. I run up now and then just to go to a friendly foreign country that is quite beautiful. Long ago I got my first border pass (called Pace) and now I have a Nexus card. It is the best deal in town. It costs $50.00 for five years and it is a free pass across the border without standing in line. It also got me through the airport in minutes when I returned from England in April because I had my eyes scanned on my Nexus before I left. Now, I can enter the country with just a peer into a machine.

Today I needed a moment to myself and a little mini vacation, so I decided to run up to Vancouver for awhile. I love Granville Street which has a fantastic gourmet grocery store called Meinhardts, a country furniture store, A West Elm, William Sonoma, Anthropology and more in just two blocks. I played around there and then hopped over to Oak Street and made it to IKEA. Funny, though -- there were no great crowds. I easily parked on Granville and I'd say that IKEA had fewer shoppers than usual even at Christmas. I did have some lovely experiences, though I bought practically nothing.

I got ready to feed the meter on Granville and dropped some coins that I had saved from my last trip to Canada. A lovely woman came along and helped me pick them up -- then she thought maybe I'd need something larger (like a Looney) to feed the meter -- so she whipped one out of her purse and put it in. she would not let me pay her. Once in the grocery store, I asked if they had a restroom. One of the clerks said no and followed it by, "Go a few blocks down to the Starbucks." Another clerk heard her and beckoned me over. "Go next door to the coffee shop. They won't mind." So I did.

While in IKEA, I was enjoying watching family units with cute kids during my yearly feast on their delicious and caloric meatballs and potatoes and gravy. When I got up to take my tray, a gentleman took it from me and put it in the cart. I say, those Canadians are simply the best at welcoming the stranger in their midst. Maybe it was the Christmas spirit -- but I sang to the beautiful music on CBC all the way home through pouring rain.

Altogether a lovely holiday shopping treat -- the best kind is where you spend little money but have lots of fun. I hope your holiday stays warm and friendly. Let's show the Canadians in our midst the same warm welcome that they showed me today.

Posted by Marilyn at December 22, 2015 4:15 PM


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