On Saturday, as I was walking out of the mall, I noticed the sky was turning a nice shade of yellow. I hurried to Parliament Hill, the closest vantage point, and stood in the cold for almost 45 minutes to capture the sunset. Nothing dramatic but a nice clear sky and a beautiful gradient. A classical winter sunset, basically.
Monthly Archives: November, 2010
Just browse a few immigration forums and you will notice how angry, frustrated or confused some applicants are. Indeed, applying for a visa or the permanent residence is stressful and the whole process can seem obscure. The idea that an immigration officer, in a Canadian embassy somewhere in the world is dissecting your professional and personal life can be quite unsettling.
The first list I made was by no means the last one. The more we travel, the more we learn. Times change too: up until our Latin America trip two years ago, I carried… a Walkman and a few homemade tapes. I finally bought an iPod nano and it literally saved my sanity during these long bus rides!
November is such a depressing month—I don’t even know why it exists. Days are cold and damp and it is pitch black by the time I go back home at 5 pm. This month is an interregnum between pumpkins and Santa Claus, between red leaves and snow. I guess we need a transition period to adapt but boy, November drags on forever.
I occasionally take part in various blogging events, such as contests, memes, photography hunts etc. It had been a while, though.
This time, I heard of the City Swap on Expat Traveler’s blog. This year, it was organized by Laura. The goal was to: “Swap some thing(s) that, in your opinion, best represent the place where you live, and what you think makes it unique”. Laura patiently assigned each participant a “city swap buddy”.
During summer, days are long, humid and sunny and people make the most of it by engaging in as many outdoor activities as possible. But once a blanket of snow falls and the days get shorter, we all become hobbits. Suddenly, nothing is more appealing than a cup of hot chocolate, a movie and layers of clothes and blankets. People are less chatty and more reserved—like if the cold had drained all the energy from them and what little they have left was used to fight winter.
We need to travel badly, like two junkies looking for a fix. We need to escape Canada and the cold winter. We need the freedom and the carefree life of those who hit the road. I don’t know where this trip will take us. We have no plans, as usual.
We just bought the tickets a couple of weeks ago, almost on a dare. It took us the whole evening to figure out the best itinerary and we decided to fly the Pacific route through L.A.
When I first came here, I found Canadian payphones really cool. France already didn’t have many public phones left because the cell phone market was booming. The few phone booths left were often dirty or out of service. Beside, to make a call, you first had to buy a phone card from a retailer, even for local locals, and you paid per minute.
Some couple argue about money, religion or work. We argue about food.
Food is deeply cultural and in our Chinese-French-Canadian household, we blend flavours. Some would call it “world cuisine”. I call it “a-compromise-so-that-we-don’t-kill-each-other”.
I have a love and hate relationship with Ottawa’s transit system. I take the bus but the bus hates me.
Taking public transportation is a second nature to me. I grew up in a city and I took the bus and the tramway a lot. In France, we only drove if we had to get out of the city. Gas is expensive and cities are made for pedestrians, not cars: narrow one-way streets, weird signs and traffic laws and traffic jams are a strong deterrent for drivers.
In this 10 Photography Tips series, I tried my best to give you some insight on various aspects of photography. I wanted to close this series with five final tips for photographers. I hope you enjoyed it and learned something!
After Waddington and the shores of the St Lawrence River, we headed to the town of Massena in St. Lawrence County. It is named after the Napoleonic general, Andre Massena—I smiled at the thought of my French heritage following me all the way to the U.S.A.
I don’t get Halloween. Even though some of the earliest Halloween traditions started in Europe, we didn’t celebrate it at all when I was a kid in France. It was primarily a North American tradition we knew about because of the U.S. horror movies. But about 15 years ago, Halloween saw a resurgence in popularity in France with the help of a huge marketing campaign led by major American companies such as McDonalds’, Eurodisney and Coke.