There’s never really a good way to introduce someone to a serious case of culture shock. Head first, while it may not seem prudent, is probably best and it’s usually the way things are done where I’m originally from. We don’t “babystep” you into anything. We give you the full show. Take it or leave it. And oftentimes people take it and come back for more. Just a couple of weeks ago, however, the tables got turned on me and that head-first experience led to a canoeing-camping trip to Nopiming Provincial Park.
Now, to the average Manitoban, this might seem like no big deal, but for me, “big deal” doesn’t even begin to describe how much of a fish-out-of-water experience this was. I’m a city girl through and through. Even growing up in the Caribbean, I lived a mere 10 minutes away from the capital. And while I have always loved the outdoors, my encounters with it were restricted to jumping waves and off cliffs at the beach during the day, watching turtles lay their eggs at night, or hiking a tree-lined trail to a waterfall. Never once, did any of these experiences take me away from the comforts of a cozy, warm bed and indoor plumbing.
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