In May 2005 I disembarked in Calgary, AB, with a one-way ticket to my new country, Canada. It was my first time in Alberta, I didn’t have a house rented yet and no job. But, apart from 4 full luggage bags, I had many many dreams. And a naivety that I didn’t know I had until then.
My partner in crime was my late husband, Ricardo, the power behind this decision and all the action required to get the Canadian permanent resident card obtained before we left Brazil.
May, now I know, is still chilly and I had my first big cold in Canada. Others came until my body got used to the local bugs. Powered by bikes, we cycled around Calgary trying to find our first home in this new country.
After nine days, we had a house. The ‘home’ came a bit later, but not much. And after just a month we had jobs. I started working at the backstock of MEC, where I stayed for a year and still have some friends from that time.
Summer came and went, as fast as it normally does around here. And then, the winter. Our first ‘real’ winter of our lives! The first time I saw snow from my living room window, I cried. Little did I know what winter means around here: From 18 hours of daylight during the summer to around eight hours during the winter.
My working hours were from 7:30 until 4:30 and soon enough I found out that I started working while it was still night and left the store when it was about to get dark, maybe 30 more minutes of daylight.
Months were passing and my body, my mind, my emotions took a toll on all the darkness I was surrounded by. I didn’t notice though until Ricardo asked me if I was planning to go back to Brazil!
Nope, that was not part of my plans but I did get quite low in energy and, should I say, on the verge of depression – maybe blues would be more accurate. But one thing became very clear during this time of adaptation and experimentation: I wanted to repeat in Canada the life I was having in Teresopolis, the town we moved in and got married in 2003, 1h30m away from Rio, in the mountains.
We rented a small 2 bedroom house in there, with a small backyard and big windows facing the valley. The sunrise would inundate our bed on the second floor and I still can feel the sensation of being half asleep on that bed, looking the view and getting soaked with the morning sun.
Fast forward 11 years and here I am, packing for my first move in over seven years. My mind never got too far away from the fact that I wanted to reproduce that life. Working from home, living in a house in a small town.
I moved from Calgary to Banff than to Canmore – a really small town for Brazilian standards with just 12 thousand people but a vibrant community and economy. I worked from home until February this year, when I had the pleasure to start working with RE/MAX Alpine Realty, and now I am moving to a house. Not much yard this time, but a similar view of the whole valley and a sunrise that will inundate my bedroom again.
I can’t be happier than I am right now. And I am 100% sure that Ricardo is guiding me through it all…