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Small Town Boy In Not So Small Town

Hmmmm this sounds like the opposite of that show, the one with Paris Hilton at the farm or whatever. (A quick check on Google reveals that it's called Simple Life, The) It's funny, even though I'm still fairly new here, I've picked up on several things you can and can't do that I could or couldn't on the Island.

First, no more running out into the street without really looking. That's a sure way to lose some limbs out here. I know it's illegal (right?) to jaywalk, but it seemed like everyone did it on the Island and the drivers were courteous enough to let people cross. Yes, as a driver, it sure was annoying waiting for old grandma to cross the street with her walker when you were blazing down North River Rd. However, you still did it just the same. It didn't feel right to make the pedestrian wait even though there was no crosswalk.

Here's it's different. You damn well better wait at that crosswalk until the light beckons you with the walk symbol or the car stops at the stop sign. Well, that is if your value your life.

Now one thing that I'm still not sure is just an Island thing or not is a FutureShop dilemma. Now back on PEI, if you paid for something at a register aside from the actual ones at the door, you could always just skip the line to get the cashier wave it over the demagnetizing device (or whatever, you know what I mean, the sensor thing) to let you through the security alarm. Well we were in St. Catherines and we did that same thing we've always done on the Island. In hindsight, I don't know if we should have. The first clue I got as to that was the fact that I noticed a nice little scowl directed our way by a lady further down the line. The next one came from the cashier who looked a little confused as to why we were up there when she was still ringing someone else through. We silently pleaded ignorance and walked out of the store. I probably won't be doing that again. Next time I'll wait the few extra minutes and save my self the discomfort of directed stares.

There is very little interaction between strangers. Yeah, kind of like what mommy always said, 'Don't talk to strangers...' It's a very mind your own business kind of manner around here. I've spoken with one neighbor so far and I think that amounted to something like, 'hey, the weather's pretty warm huh?'. Then I got the pretty habitual response you'd expect to that sort of question and off I went for a little walk. No one says hi to each other really as they pass. I guess in a way that's good too; otherwise you'd spend your time walking constantly saying hi to keep up with the flow of people. I just feels weird to have come from a place where everyone acted like they were everyone else's friend to a place where I know absolutely no one. I've really got to meet some people...

I guess the general gist of things is that people here aren't as tight knit as they are back on PEI. Everyone at least a little bit cared for others there. Here, it's probably too hard to care for everyone else. There'd be very little time left for yourself. That's what I'll attribute this to.

In other news, a person I met and got to know a bit at DiscoveryQuest in Acadia is going to Waterloo as well. It was very weird and coincidental as I hadn't spoken to him in a long while and he messaged me last night asking me where I was going to university. It was like he already knew...


;-D
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Anonymous Anonymous wrote at 7/17/2005 3:07 AM

Hey Charlie,

I don't have an actual account, so I decided to do it anonymously! But man, coming to Vancouver I felt the exact same way! I noticed how tunnel visioned the people are here and how much they don't really care and also the whole crossing the road thing too!!! hahaha. But don't get discouraged, I came to Vancouver a few days early and I explored the town quite a bit and I had an oppurtunity to meet some people (mainly women :P) haha, by just sitting by them on park benches or asking for directions. It's amazing if you show sincere interest how people will warm up to you. So don't get discouraged, you're a great guy and you'll definitely have no problems meeting people! Plus, the water here sucks too! :P, hope to talk to you soon. I just wanted to let you know you aren't alone when you enter a bigger central from a small town!    



Blogger Charlie wrote at 7/17/2005 6:18 PM

Ahoy there! Hope You're enjoying it. Sounds like you are at least eh? ;)

I guess the difference between me here and you there is that you have people about your age all around you. Me on the other hand, I don't think there are many kids my age in the neighborhood. I have seen a few kids who look like the go to the local elementary school. I could always try to talk to them, although the parents would probably think I'm a molester or something then. =P    



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