My girl MaVic and I were concurring over some tea and cider last evening: How big and amazing are this lovely planet's varied landscapes?!? Ya heard? MaVic had been non-profiteering her way through Mexico and Nicaragua for the last year and found these countries so lush and verdant. She being an Argentinian, I figured, like, "Duh, you are Latina. You should know this." Because by virtue of her indigenosity to a Spanish-speaking country, she should totally have the topographic map of ALL Spanish-speaking countries memorized. Sometimes I'm so plainly the Ugly American. Pass me that latte so I can go spill it on myself while driving my SUV and checking my text messages, and then go sue Starbucks for making its coffee so dang hot.
Despite my ugly, ugly, dastardly ignorance, I really do love to learn about the countries of the world. I love to learn the eleventy million ways people greet one another, the way the sun sets in its way, which is the same but somehow so different when it is behind an infinitely cresting set of mountains or casting shadows on red clay plateaus.
MaVic said that she had only recently discovered the jewels of Canada. She said that she went up to British Columbia, that she went to Nova Scotia and yelped, "Who put this here? WHO put THIS here?"
I have had the absolute same reaction every time I've had the chance to cross the northern border. And to think I lived along the Great Lakes for 18 years and it has only been since I moved away from the Great Lakes that I've gotten to acquaint myself with Canada. Oh, Canada. You're gorgeous. And pure, there's something very pure and unblemished about Canada. Toronto? So urbane AND clean. Banff? The air smells like Febreeze. Montreal? Sensational culture without the fabricated Vegas-y pretense.
Here's just a few memories of my recent visits to Canada. Please try to focus on the backdrops while I marvel at how I could once fit into those jeans.