Thursday, August 23, 2012

I am Canadian!




























I had the good fortune of becoming a Canadian Citizen this week. Now I officially hold two Citizenships (British and Canadian) so I'm feeling pretty lucky. At the swearing in ceremony we were asked to think back to the day we arrived in Canada. I was 12. My father had gone bankrupt in the UK and an uncle "arranged" a job for him, as well as passage and immigration for our family of 6. When we arrived 6 months after my father, we were taken to a very pokey little cottage, on loan to us until my father could secure a rental house. Although it was on Lake Huron, it was a damp and dark little place. We were left there with no car all week while my father went to his job in the city and had to wait until the weekend to get groceries etc. I hated everything about this move, especially leaving my grandparents behind in the UK. It was like we were thrown into strange waters without a life vest and it was sink or swim. Eventually we moved to the suburbs and muddled together a life of a transplant in a new country. I can't imagine what it was like for many of my fellow citizens at the ceremony, some who have come without the English language, some as refugees. 

I was telling my story of my arrival 40 years ago to my adopted pet family, so they could understand their roots. They could barely keep their eyes open. 

30 comments:

  1. A vida é assim, tem momento de batalha pela sobrevivência,mas temos que ter como lembrança as coisas boas. Tudo deu certo para você e hoje também é uma cidadão canadense. Parabéns e sucesso.
    Aqui também é assim eu falo e as pessoas não escutam minhas histórias.
    Tenha uma ótima semana.

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  2. Congratulations! It is true that we often don't think about the changes, fears, worries or even excitement new comers face.

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  3. That's fantastic, Chania! Congratulations! I love your story. It must have been a pretty daunting adventure for a little girl. My husband became Canadian a few years back. I cried my eyes out.

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  4. I just realized I ca also get duo citizenship or at least a British passport as my birthmother arrived here in her twenties from Leeds. Anyhow welcome aboard!!!! HA.

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  5. Thanks for sharing your story. I always enjoy any story you have to tell.
    Love the photos of Balto and the kitty. Honestly, I just love your blog, Chania. It really is one of my favorites.

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  6. Yay! now get out there and vote :>)



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  7. Congratulations!
    Woot Woot
    YAYA
    Yipppeee

    WAKE UP FAMILY !!!!!!! lol <3
    xx
    z

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  8. I listened with interest.
    Congratulations!!!
    m.

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  9. Congratulations! I think your story was great. Kids, honestly!

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  10. wow, what a story, i love it. i find it so fascinating how we all come from different places, in different ways and yet we are, deep down, so much alike.
    congrats!!!

    xo
    janet

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  11. Congratulations Canadian. . . I liked hearing about your beginnings . . . and kept my eyes open the entire time . . .

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  12. CONGRATULATIONS !!!

    We just have permanent resident IDs and that was a big deal for us , taking 5 years to accomplish so I do know a bit of how you feel, getting to this point.
    A wonderful sense of accomplishment and how great to be citizen to 2 wonderful countries !

    I not only kept my eyes open but wanted to hear more about your beginnings.
    A book is in there, isn't there ? :)

    besos

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  13. a leg in each country!
    well done that woman!

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  14. Congrats Chania! What an interesting story - I don't understand why the fur kids weren't more interested? :)

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  15. Congrats ! ! ! Glad to have you on this side of the world. Blessings, Lynda

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  16. Congratulations!! What an interesting story.

    Peter is still waiting for his notification to go for his test. Hopefully soon.

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  17. Congrats! What an interesting story. It is so hard to move no matter what (especially for the kiddos) but, I can't imagine the challenges when you come to a new country.
    The pets do indeed look very interested ; ) Our 3 cats have the same sleepy looks going on over here.

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  18. Congratulations on your dual citizenship......thank you for sharing your story....I can't imagine moving to a new country at that age..... but what a wonderful country it is.

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  19. Congratulations, a round of Oh Canada all round.

    If I was a cozy as those two I would be heavy lidded my ownself.

    I'm sure they loved every detail of your story. I did.

    You never know one of them might write a post about it while you're sleeping.

    xo

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  20. Congratulations Chania. The pets are impressed by their comforts I am afraid.

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  21. Congrats Momma !

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  22. Chania, way to go on your Canadian Citizenship ! Now, you too, can sit on the "fence" in somewhat similar fashion as my Crabby Cabbie does with something else...lol. What a nice feeling you must have gained? I loved the part where you stated, "although it was on Lake Huron" ... being raised in a town on Lake Huron as a child I know how great that was. What's up with those pets of your? do they not realize a great fact of life story when they hear one?????

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  23. At the "swearing in" ceremony did you have to say "Bloody hell and *!$%!, I'm now a %("**ing Canadian!"?

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  24. Congrats Chania! I enjoyed reading this about you even if the fur kids didn't care. Hope Isaac stays away frm FL altogether. Ann

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  25. Congratulations! What a fascinating story--- I always knew you had quite a tale (or several to tell). Your family was most resilient in uprooting themselves and completely starting over in a strange land. I am sure it has contributed to your worldliness and ability to connect with a variety of different people.

    I thought about you all during this week, as one week ago I found a stray, 4=month old, lab mix puppy. She followed us home while we were walking around town after dinner. She was so infested with fleas, we bathed her and gave her a soft, safe sopt for the night. All night we slept fitfully, I was not sure what to do with her, and eventually decided to take her to the vet in the morning, with the hopes of possibly keeping her. She was even sicker than we thought, having multiple kinds of parasites, which the vet treated her for. We named her Sadie and took care of her all week. Out house has very little yard and is on a busy street, which made outside time more difficult. She was tethered to me when inside to keep her from traumatizing my poor cats. By yesterday, I was feeling torn between really loving this little creature and feeling overwhelmed by her needs. I decided to take her to a reputable no-kill shelter (where my friend volunteers) yesterday morning. And I cried all day long. With your fostering of labs, how do you not become attached? I feel like my heart was ripped out when I turned this puppy over to someone else.

    Thanks for your constant kindnesses. The most wonderful compliments I have received on my blog have come from you, and I am forever grateful.

    Happy Sunday, Chania.

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  26. ha, ha! I like your pets photos :)
    Congratulations!!!

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  27. We (immigrants) certainly all arrived here for all variety of reasons...I found your story spellbinding and tender...those animals need a talking too!
    Like you, I hold two 'citizenships' - I like to think I am an citizen of the planet - makes life so much easier!

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  28. Congratulations Chania!! I have been trying to get caught up on your blog and was so happy for you when I read this post. What a great feeling it must be for you.
    Anyway, bienvenue Chania.

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I love to read each and every comment and are thrilled that you take the time to send one. Thank you so much. Chania