Love letter to my country
When I decided to leave you to come and live in England, people said "you never know - you might want to stay there", but I always knew that would never happen. I missed you even before I left, and not just because you happen to be home to all of the people I love the most.
I counted down the lasts for weeks before getting on the plane last August - last camping trip, last drive down highway 401, last beer with my friends, last dinner of hot wings, last Tim Horton's coffee. I looked at the stretch of trees and fields we passed by on the way to the airport, and thought about how much I love the wide open spaces and fresh air, and knew I would miss those things very much.
Since I've been in Europe, not one person has made a negative comment to me (or around me) about you. We Canadians are known as friendly, intelligent people who respect the world around them and balance out the trouble currently being caused by some other countries. The British love us despite our lack of ability in soccer, Holland loves us because we helped them during the wars, and the French love us because we speak French too (that, and because we're not American), dozens of other countries admire us for our leadership in hockey, and still more love us for being the peacekeeping country that we are.
I've learned that spending time in a different place makes you appreciate home even more. I've become even more patriotic than I used to be and love teaching my class about you, and now have parents coming up to me saying their children want to visit and see you for themselves.
And so Canada, on your birthday, please know that me and all of the other proud Canucks abroad are wearing our white and red today, watching old re-runs of Molson Canadian commercials on youtube (this too), toasting you with our beer, singing our national anthem, and missing you like crazy.