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Adjusting to Canadian Life.

CANADA | Wednesday, 28 February 2007 | Views [915]

Heya Dance Fans,

My second month in Canada has been even more eventful than the first as I have finally settled in, I now consider myself Canstralian. School is cruisng along with the kids starting to understand the accent and mostly behaving themselves, although I still can't quite get used to them going off for a smoke when they feel the need. There are times when I miss my cushy private school in Perth, but the staff at Burnaby South have been awesome.

Before I left an Perth an experienced exchange teacher told me to sign up for everything that I could and reject no offers from anybody, regardless of how wierd or different it sounded. The result has been weekends absolutely chockers with things to do and school days filled with random activities. At the moment I am still helping out the Dragon Boating team, am dancing as part of the Banghara Club (Indian dancing for the uninitiated) and coaching the South Rebels Cricket Team. The cricket team is classic, they are so bad that they make me look good. I admit I am loving being the 'expert' on all things cricket! We won't win a game but the kids are enthusiastic at least.

Outside of school this last month Amanda and I did a range of cool things. Amanda arrived in February and we have been hanging out a fair bit, including a weekend away down in Seattle. It rained the WHOLE time we were there but it was an amazing city. We checked out the Experience Music Project museum which had heaps of cool interactive exhibits and massive sections devoted to Hendrix, Pearl Jam and Nirvana. We also made it to Pike's Fish Markets where they make a big spectacle out of selling fish and even had Amanda stand in the middle as they threw very large fish to each other, precariously close to her head. The city still has a grungy feel and the live music scene seemed to be a very big part of the city's culture.

As part of the exchange program there was a welcome to BC conference held in Victoria on Vancouver Island which is basically an excuse for exchange teachers to have a day off school and catch up with some fellow aussies. I caught the ferry over to Victoria on the Thursday night and met up with Richard & Erin at the Sticky Wicket Hotel for a few pints. I met them at the exchange conference in Sydney and they are just a really cool couple, even if they do support the swans! The conference was very low key and most of the time was spent checking out Victoria which is very European in look and feel. The only downside was, as Canada's mildest city, the number of homeless is unbelievable as they cannot live in places like Calgary because it is just too damn cold.

This last month I have been working on my skiing with a couple of school trips to Whistler/Blackcomb. It is an AMAZING mountain, so much to see and do and soooooooo many aussies. I have finally done some blue runs and can now do them relatively comfortably. Bas tried to kill me by taking me down a black run which I did completely on my arse! This was at Mount Baker in Washington State, a much more chilled mountain than Whistler but still as beautiful. After a day of skiing, Bas and I joined some of his mates at the pub and proceeded to get shitfaced!. We ended up staying in a cabin right near the mountain and having a late night hot tub, with beer in hand ofcourse! Its a pretty hard life.

I have managed to squeeze in a game of Ice Hockey which really is a crazy sport. The major team in town is the Vancouver Canucks who play in the NHL, but at around $100 a ticket for a crap seat they are a little pricey. For around $10 you can see the Vancouver Giants play in the WHL, its basically all the young kids trying to break into the NHL, kinda like the WAFL. The night we went there was a fight in the first three seconds and some MASSIVE hits, what an awesome spectator sport. The Giants won last year so are one of the better WHL teams and they are looking good to go back to back this year.

Anyways, wherever you are and whatever you're up to, I hope you're doing well.

Keep smiling, Ben.

P.S. As part of working at Burnaby South, I participated in a staff competition where I had to dance with three other teachers to "These Boots Are Made For Walking'. The dance was part of the Staff Olympics, where groups of teachers competed in various events. My team actually won, yay! As some of you know already, the footage has been posted on You Tube. Be warned, its not pretty!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H6vxtAqoRP0

This first link is just my groups dance, poor footage but you will get the idea.

This second link shows all the groups that performed, the footage is heaps clearer but you have to sift throught it to find my group. My team was Team Historica and we are about 2 to 3 minutes tinto the 9 minutes I think.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lxVBXi9qhKY&mode=related&search=

Don't laugh too much....

Ben.

Tags: Work

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