I promised a long time ago that I'd talk about why I love living in Canada, and I... totally never got around to it.
But today is Canada Day! The day when all the provinces decided to get together and become one happy family! And then they went out for butter tarts and poutine. Or something.
So I will celebrate by telling you why I love Canada.
First, it is clean. Amazingly clean. Everybody who comes here tells us how clean it is. We have lots of clean water, clean air, and wiiiiiiide open spaaaaaces. Even if you live in the gritty metropolis that is Toronto, it only takes you forty minutes on the 401 (assuming it is not Rush Hour, which everybody knows occurs from approximately 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. and from 7 p.m. to 6 a.m. every day) to get to somewhere cleaner. But even Toronto is cleaner than a lot of big cities. And a lot of Canada is quite staggeringly pretty, landscape-wise. (Our buildings, on the other hand, are fairly meh because none of them are more than 200 years old and way too many of them were built in the 60's and 70's.)
Secondly, it is safe. Bad things do happen here, and occasionally horrifically bad things happen, but at a laughably lower rate than elsewhere. I have a friend living just north of Toronto who still thinks nothing of going away for the weekend and leaving the house unlocked and her keys in her car. (Though I will say that I hyperventilated a bit when she told me that.) Part of that is because we do not like guns. I approve of not having guns. I see very little reason that anyone short of a law enforcement officer or a grizzly bear hunter needs to be carrying a gun.
Thirdly, I have never in my life become sick or injured, or had anyone else I know or love become sick or injured, and thought, "Oh no, how are we going to pay for this?" This is a big, big plus. Yes, our health care system has its flaws, but I really don't think that having to wait a little longer for certain procedures than someone in the US might (and even this is debatable, depending on location and the nature of the treatment) is a serious flaw compared to, say, going into total bankruptcy because your mother had a heart attack and spent three weeks in intensive care before having bypass surgery and your family can't afford to pay the massive whopping hospital bill. EVERYONE who is a Canadian citizen is entitled to full health care, and even things like midwifery and a yearly optical examination are covered, which is awesome. (You still have to pay for your own prescriptions, but still.)
Fourthly, Canadians in the main tend to be laid-back. We do occasionally get riled up about stuff (sometimes really weird stuff, like women fighting for the right to go topless in public and actually winning, even though I have yet to see anyone do this, thank heavens) but by and large we're pretty willing to let other people make their own decisions instead of campagining to have everybody live according to one particular group's set of rules. Mind you, in practice this creates a kind of creeping liberalism that can sometimes be annoying when any attempt to take a stand on principle is seen as Oppressive. But I think it's still better than living in a constant froth of outrage about how This Country Used To Be Great But Then Those Secular Humanists (or Fundamentalist Christians) Came And Took It All Away.
Fifthly, we have butter tarts. NOM.
Okay, so maybe I'm not taking this list entirely seriously. But I have travelled to several different countries now, many of which I have found attractive and admirable in their own way and would be happy to return to as a visitor, but I have yet to go anywhere that made me feel sorry that I live in Canada. I love England, I am nigh fanatical in my passion for Wales, I enjoyed the year I spent going to school in New Jersey, and I thought Israel was amazing and would love to go back for another visit some day. But ultimately I am always glad to come home to my quiet, unassuming, fresh-scrubbed little (albeit very big, in terms of land mass) country.
And I think this video says it all, really. Warning: extreme catchiness ahead.
Brits have got the monarchy
The US has the money
But I know that you wanna be Canadian
The French have got the wine and cheese
Koalas chill with the Aussies
But I know that you wanna be Canadian