I’ve been absent from this space for a while, mostly because I haven’t been in the mood to write. My parents were in town and then we were off to Northern CA for the Napa wedding (didn’t pick any of those options, FYI, but instead went with this little polka dot number).
I love SoCal with all my heart, but NorCal has definitely grown on me over the past few months. While I’m at a point where I can acknowledge that Vancouver is a great city, it still doesn’t feel like home. Canada is fine, but I find myself feeling more patriotic than I ever have in my life for the US. I know we have our problems, but now that I’m a resident of a country that is not my own I really appreciate America in a new way. Today especially, as friends and family are celebrating our independence, I feel homesick for my homeland.
Searching for a job as a temporary resident of Canada has been harder than I imagined. Most job listings flat-out state that preference will be given to Canadians and permanent residents (a status that takes 3 years and a formal immigration process to achieve). I’ve also come across jobs with maximum age requirements (i.e. jobs held for people under the age of 30). While I knew it might be tough to find full-time employment in a foreign country, I never anticipated it would be like this. Perhaps I’ve been lucky in my past job searches, but I’m used to getting at least an interview. At first I thought I was just going about my job search the wrong way, but in doing some research I’ve found that this is actually quite common here. The unemployment rate among immigrants to Canada is extremely high. I have the necessary work permits, etc., but that doesn’t seem to matter. I just feel very stuck and miss living in a country where my citizenship status didn’t seem to color every aspect of my life.
I definitely appreciate the immigrant experience in a whole new way. Politicians in the US are always running on platforms that keep American jobs for Americans and I never really thought much about that. Now I understand just how difficult it must be for the thousands of people who move to the US in pursuit of opportunity and find it difficult to get a foot in the door. I know I have it much better than most people in my situation, but it’s still hard.
Today is just another day in Canada. I wish I was home to celebrate, but I guess that isn’t in the cards. In the meantime, I hope all of you Americans have a great Fourth of July. Watch some fireworks for me 🙂