Friday, January 7, 2011

Canada & the USA

People often ask if living in the USA is any different than living in Canada.  For the most part, the answer is "not really."  But there are some things, so I thought I'd dedicate a blog post to them.  NOTE: When I refer to the USA, I am mainly referring to Philly and area, because I know each state is different, much like the provinces are in Canada.

Here they are, in no particular order.  I'll start with the obvious.

The accents.

Canadian's say "eh," and American's say, "huh."

Spelling: check/cheque, center/centre, favorite/favourite, etc. 

Canada: washrooms USA: restrooms

There are more lakes, rivers and ponds in Canada.  

American's don't remove their shoes before entering someone's home, even if they just walked through a mud puddle.  In Canada, you could have fifty people in your home and every one of those people will, without thinking twice about it, remove their shoes at the door.  In fact, I used to get in trouble if I forgot to take my shoes off!

American's L-O-V-E their football.  In Canada, it's hockey all the way.  (For the record, I married a man whose partial to hockey; he fits in well with my family).

Gas is more expensive in Canada.  About 40 cents a gallon more expensive, though gas is sold in litres (not litERs) in Canada.

Groceries are more expensive in Canada, too.  Our grocery bill in the USA is half of what it would be in Canada.

Miles-Kilometers.  States-Provinces.  

I could get in trouble for this one...Canadians in general are friendlier--no offense to any of my wonderful American friends who are reading this ^-^)  There are definitely many friendly people in America.  I'm just making generalizations.  

Between Ontario and Pennsylvania, the winter weather is by far colder in Ontario in the winter; and not so much hotter in PA during the summer, but more humid and more lastingly humid; the humidity in Ontario fades with the sun and it can actually be quite cool in the mornings some days.  But contrary to popular belief, being Canadian does not mean I am used to the cold!

Medical (not dental) health coverage is SO expensive and complicated in the states.  In Canada it's simple and free.  For now.  On the flip side, it takes only days to get an appointment for an MRI in the states, but can seem to take weeks in Canada.

And then there's the food....

Butter Tarts (similar to a pecan pie without the pecans) and poutine (french fries with cheese curds and gravy), and nanaimo bars (a favourite Christmas treat) are unheard of in the states.  They are the only two foods I can think of offhand.  On the other hand, cheesesteaks are a Philadelphia-thing.

American's love their soft pretzels.

There is no Rolo ice cream here!!!  And Pralines and Cream ice cream is hard, if not impossible, to find.

Dill Pickle, Ketchup and All-Dressed potato chips are not commonly found on the grocery store shelves in the US.

Pizza toppings are more diverse in Canada.  It's pretty basic here in the states.  

Chinese food is different: fresher in Canada, more 'candied' in the USA.  And I haven't been able to find a Chinese restaurant in the USA that sells chicken balls.

In the US, there are restaurants everywhere, both franchises and little independently owned places.  In Canada, there are plenty of places to eat, but the restaurants don't seem to populate the cities quite as densely.  

One final thing.  I've noticed quite a significant difference in take-out sizes and finally remembered to save a cup and take a picture for comparison.  Behold- on the left is a LARGE coffee cup from Wawa (USA).  In the middle, a LARGE from Tim Hortons (a Canadian franchise).  And on the far right, a LARGE from a Tim Horton's located in the USA.

Oh, and very important--Tim Horton ice caps taste like they're missing an ingredient in the states.  Nowhere near as good.

That's all I can think of.  Consider yourself more educated. ;-)


Anonymous said...

Interesting! Thank you for sharing.

Cherish said...

There are so many things in this post I want to comment on! Moving to NL from Ontario was like moving to another country too, but I guess that's because it's so isolated and has retained so much of it's own culture. I actually get made fun of if I say 'eh' here, though that's SUPPOSED to be a Canadian thing. Here it's b'y.

Those cup sizes are crazy! Do they have XL there? I can't imagine that much coffee! And really Ashley, maybe you need to reconsider and move back to Canada, just for the chicken balls!

Fun topic :)

Anonymous said...

no chicken balls!!! BOOOOO

the size difference in cups are crazy!!

and tim hortons ice caps, taste so much better in lethy than in cal!


Bob said...

Hey there Sweet-pea.. Whats left to say Eh !.. Well done.. p.s. gas hit 1.187 tonite. thats ummm, about $5.10/gal

Tammy said...

You do realize that the Health Insurance is free in Canada and other places because they charge up the wazoo in taxes.....just saying :-D, love you!