And in honor/honour of that, I've made two lists. One for the top 10 thing I'm going to miss about California (Please note that all of these 10 would be people/groups of people, so I left those off.) and one for the top 10 things I'm looking forward to about being back in Canada (Please note that this one does include people/groups of people... cause really - I'm moving to be closer to family. It is the number one reason).
So without further ado:
Top 10 thing I'm going to miss about California/Bay Area:
1. Trader Joe's. This one isn't listed too high. It will be the hard for me to lose TJs. I don't know just how I'll live without Ginger Granola. Or Gingerbread box cake. Or their frozen section. Or cheap eggs. Or the dried fruit! Or fresh salsa. TJs is on of those places that just makes me happy. TJ I will really, really miss you.
2. Public Library. This one also isn't too high on my list. Sure there are libraries (almost) everywhere you go, but I love my library. I will seriously miss the return system at the MVPL. Automatic returns people! And if you want a book, you request it, they buy it! I think of the 30+ books I've requested over the years, they've turned down my suggestion once. Once! I am going to miss my little library. It feels like home to me.
3. Weather. I am very spoiled being able to a) run outside all year long. b) swim outside all year long. (I love swimming outside!) c) wear sandals 10 months of the year. d) sleep with my window open for 8+ months of the year. (I've LOVED that!)
4. Mountains. I love mountains. I'm really, really, really going to miss seeing the mountains. I'm even going to miss the hills. They are just sooo nice. They make me so happy.
5. Camping. Yeah. There's camping in Ontario, but it lacks #4. Mountains. And it has something we don't really have here. Mosquitoes. And Ontario has them in spades.
6. Events. There are sooo many more concerts and events to do here. I've said to people before - "If you want to see someone perform, it's not a question of if they will come to the area, it's when." Pretty much whomever you want to see, will be performing somewhere in the area sometime. And I'm going to miss the Sharks too. I know, I know. I'm going back to Canada. Sorry. I'm a Sharks fan people. Funny that I was never into hockey growing up, but now I love it. No matter where I go, I think I'll stay a sharks fan.
7. Tivo. If you have a tivo, 'nough said. I'm going to have to watch commercials again? I'm not going to have 5 episodes of Jeopardy! at my fingertips at all time? Whatever shall I do?
8. Free shipping. I'm really going to miss all of the internet shopping you can do in the US.
9. Advance greens. Sure, they make traffic lights take longer, but man advance greens sure make driving easier. You don't have to gauge whether or not you'll be able to get through the intersection in time. You know! You have the right of way. Oh! And on the topic of driving I'll include diagonal parking spaces. I love diagonal parking spaces. I understand why they totally wouldn't work in winter snowy parking lots. I will miss them!
10. Mexican Food. Yum. And you know that caucasian mexican food is nothing like Mexican Mexican food.
Top 10 things I'm looking forward to about Canada
1. Family day. (i.e. Saturday.) In University, my brother and I had family day - a day where we'd get together and hang out. (I know. Aren't we so Mayberry? Love it.) We'd bike to the farmer's market. Or bake pies. Or watch movies/tv. Or anything, but together. That tradition has continued with the rest of the family, but I haven't been around for 6 years to participate. So sad. I am so looking forward to being a sister/daughter/aunt/BFF in person.
2. UWEELRS in person. (i.e. Book club) This can now happen with a mug of tea in hand rather than over email. (Which has also been great! Don't get me wrong...)
3. Weather! I miss rain storms. I miss thunder and lightning. We get the wimpiest storms here!! I'm actually sort of looking forward to having seasons. I miss the crispness there is in the autumn air. I love nice long summer nights. And winter things! Like skating outside. And making snowmen. And, although I've never done it much in the past I think I could really get into cross country skiing and snowshoeing for good forms of exercise.
4. Camping. More specifically, canoe trips. I've missed these! I would love, love, love to go on a canoe trip this coming summer. Any takers?? Seriously - call me.
5. Gardening! Fresh produce from the backyard!! It's like my own CSA in the backyard! (Watch out fam. I'm going to be baking you zillions of rhubarb cakes and pies in just a few months!)
6. Getting the accent back! I was informed while in NZ that I've lost my Canadian accent. I still say 'eh?' but have lost some of the homeland twang. I have to get it back! (I almost find it funny when I can hear my parent's accent. But in a way I miss it.)7. Similarly, but not exactly the same - Not having to translate things in my head. Okay. So American English and Canadian English aren't so different. But soon I won't have to think about whether it's honour or honor. Or check or cheque. Or if I'm supposed to say College friends or University friends.
8. Again on the same note: the metric system!! I like miles, but I've never really gotten very good at Fahrenheit. I get it, but it takes me awhile. It will be nice to not have to think about it!9. Bulk Food. I don't know why there are no bulk food stores here. Is it odd that I'm looking forward to being able to buy spices, oatmeal, flour, chocolate and anything else you can think of in bulk? I hope it's not weird, cause I am looking forward to it.
10. A new job. Maybe this should be higher on the list... I am looking forward to a new job. ... When I finally find one. Eek. But I need a change in life, and I think a new job will help there. So I hope I get a good one!
So, wish me luck on my move. I am quite nervous about it. And only time will tell if this is the right decision. But I feel it is.
Thank you California for 6 fabulous years. I'll be back to visit.