Now that I’m a full-blooded Canadian (previously),there are a couple of distinctive things that make the difference between the continents I’ve lived on, North America and Europe. The five things that truly surprised me:
- Snow. During my very first snowstorm, I thought snow was sort of fun. When this snow kept on going for you know, a couple of more months, that ‘fun’ part quickly faded away. It’s not really the snow amount that bothers me tho: it’s the fact that the snow keeps hanging around for a while because of the subzero temperatures.
- Seasonal awareness. You can literally feel and smell the seasonal changes: I’ve never really paid attention to this when I lived in Europe.
- The dramatic difference in fauna and wildlife. Seeing deer walk around surprised me. But raccouns, skunks, groundhogs, coyotes? Not to mention, the difference in birds: hummingbirds, cardinals and robins (“giant robins”) absolutely make up for the little birds I’ve seen and gotten used to in Europe.
I remember the very first day I saw a Bluejay fly about and I was too stunned to figure out what I just had seen as I couldn’t properly name the bird. I wonder if that’s the same feeling the very first North American explorers had when they set foot on this continent.