On Friday night the AFL grand final was shown at an Irish pub downtown. It was organised by the Vancouver Cougars AFL team (a local footy team here in Vancouver, made up of mostly expats I think). Jess and I went along with Charlotte and Ziyad (my two French housemates) as well as Jess' friends who live here. It was definitely interesting watching it with four people who had never seen an AFL game before! However most of the 250+ crowd was made up of Aussies. I have never been so glad to hear an Australian accent before in my life! Everyone stood up for the National anthem, which I thought was really cool. As impressed as my French friends were at the display, I told them unfortunately this would rarely happen in Australia. It must be something about being overseas that makes you feel more patriotic. Suddenly I was really interested in a game of AFL...something which rarely occurs back home haha. When you are so far away from home you grasp at small things which remind you of your country; like enthusiastically watching a game of footy, or being over protective over your Vegemite. When I first arrived I thought Canada and Australia were pretty much the same. However as time has progressed I have noticed there are many subtle differences between the two, which has made me appreciate Australia so much more. For example our university system (they have nothing like HECS here), so university literally is only for the wealthy. As well as other things such as the choice to vote (whereas it it illegal in Australia not to vote). One of the most astounding differences is the only very recent change in laws allowing people to BYO to restaurants in Vancouver. Which meant before now the idea of bringing your own alcohol to a restaurant was foreign!! We definitely have it better in Aus in that regard!
This weekend coming up is Thanksgiving long weekend. We are having a big Thanksgiving dinner Sunday night, and then on Monday are hiring a car and going to Squamish for the day. Photos to follow!