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Updated: May 29, 2020

1. Finding an unpacked dishwasher

I can hear the violins of the orchestra as the door opens and it is completely bare. A rare gem. It puts a smile on my face and somehow the day is even better! I know you can relate, but we run ours at least twice a day. It means that the next pile of crockery and things can be loaded with minimal washing of dishes. I don't mind the cleaning and housework which is a massive change for most of us living here. The key is to get organised with a capital "O"! I do miss my darling nanny Geraldine though.

2. Cheque books (Check books)

I thought that living in a first world country would mean that cheque books were a thing of the past, like in the days of the A-Team or MacGyver in South Africa. No, your bank will issue you with a couple of hundred of these things and for some of us, will need to learn how to write a check! You will need checks to secure your rental property (get your Voltaren out because you will have to write out about 12 or 13 post-dated cheques to give to the landlord. Who uses a pen these days?!!!). Your kids school will want cheques for most things - unless they have moved over to the cashless system already (yay, lucky us and sorry for you if your school hasn't!!).

3. "I'm Good" means "no thanks"

Think about it for a sec. I say: "hey Matthew, would you like another Timbit?" Matthew replies, "I'm good thanks". Do you understand what he just said? You do understand because of the tone he uses which makes you realise he has had enough. I am of course glad that Matthew is good.

4. Pedestrians have right of way, ALWAYS

No matter what, pedestrians walk across the road and all traffic will stop for them. Most pedestrians will not take as much as a glance to check if there is traffic hurtling at 100km's per hour toward them. It is quite uncanny actually and I think it is so unique (especially for us). In winter, people wear their parkas and hoods covered with fur over their heads and cannot see left or right unless they turn their whole body. As soon as the walking man appears, the people are off! If I am driving, it is most likely that the traffic light is green for me and the pedestrian walking man is green too, so I will have to wait until all have crossed the road until I can go. Can be quite stressful in downtown traffic with so many things to consider like other cars, trams, turning right on red, pedestrians, motorised wheelchairs, bicycles, skateboards etc. I am so happy to know that my kids are safe on the roads and that cars will stop.

5. It's Chalk and Cheese!

Canadians don't know this phrase. Hilarious. So where did it come from? Is this a South Africanism? I found this on