Posts Tagged With: Go Canada


What a great game last night. To be out and able to watch it live on TV with a bunch of other Canadians was pretty exciting. It was certainly edge of your seat action. Both sides played hard and Canada dumped it in first in the first period. Sweden fought back, but Price (the Canadian Goalie) had cat-like reflexes and deflected, blocked and saved. Canada scored again in the second period and then the third. There were a lot of close calls too where it just hit the post. Sweden fought harder and the last minutes seemed like it rarely came out of the Canadian end, but Canada held on.

Being in a restaurant in Shanghai we could almost imagine we were back home. Red hockey jerseys and Olympic gear was worn by 90% of the patrons. The game started and everyone was glued to the set. The place is covered in flat screen TVs and many of them had the local Chinese channel on. A few TVs had a live feed from another English-speaking country, so we could hear the commentary. It was no Hockey Night in Canada, but would do. It was funny since the games didn’t sync up and on 2 occasions the bar cheered and some of us were left wondering what??? Then 10 seconds later we saw the Canadian goal. A few people hushed the crowd and said “Don’t spoil it!”, but it just added to the excitement and energy in the room.

It was an amazing game. I was always waiting for Sweden to score…. but they didn’t. Canada had a lot of shots and misses, but got it in an incredible 3 times. In the last minute and half of the game our table started to sing Oh Canada. This was our game, and we were winning and we were proud. Our poor Aussie colleague I am sure isn’t sure what to make of all this. Soon everyone was singing along at the top of their lungs. What a moment. Didn’t matter if you were a singer or not -you joined in and sang loud. If you closed your eyes we could have been in any bar back home, but we all came together and cheered on our home country here in Shanghai. What a memory….

Great game men!



Did you watch the game???

I have photos from last night, but I am running off to work now. I will add pictures later, so check back tomorrow.

Categories: Chinese Adventures, teaching overseas | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Being an Expat During the Olympics

Being an expat living in China is very different from daily life back home. How does that affect life during the Olympics? At home proud Canadians are watching and listening to the various events, interviews and reading about beaver_721-300x283great wins and losses in the daily papers. Highlights are played and re-played in case you missed it. At work back home daily comments like “Did you see that winning goal?” or “Did you watch the game last night?” or “Wow we got another medal” could be heard in staff rooms and around the water cooler. Being an expat it is very different… we don’t get any of this. It goes without saying your home country TV is not available. Trying to watch the Olympic games can be difficult and if you can tune into it your host country will be playing events that that country is involved in. Some web hosts show TV programs and movies, rarely sporting events. Throw in living in China where access to home sites are blocked because it reads your local IP address. End result —no Olympic coverage. Watching events is not easy for expats. Trying to get information on medals, wins and stories becomes a quest of details on the internet trying to find access to local blogs and newspapers.

Image Credit: Bev Young

Image Credit: Bev Young

I am not a big sports fan and I never watch events, or care much about who won or lost. The Olympics, for me, are DSC06643different. The Winter Olympics are my favourite. The opening and closing ceremonies dazzle the senses and the events with close calls, falls and medals are a true edge of your seat action that never disappoint. The feeling of pride comes through the glow of the television as you watch all the hard work of all the athletes involved. Canadian’s show more patriotism and wear their Olympic mittens with pride.

2010 Vancouver Olympics were on home turf. Energy and excitement was everywhere. This was just before we left for China, so we had our fill. Along comes 2014 and the Winter Olympics are here again. Our TV mostly comes from Hong Kong and the Philippines. Both countries who will not be sending teams to the Winter Olympics. We can watch CNN, but their reports are brief on the games. CNN comes from Hong Kong, but the Olympic information is from the American feed. It doesn’t fill the quest for our Canadian content. Local restaurants have been putting on the local Chinese channel, so we have been able to see a few things in action. Of course the sound is turned down, so it is a bit hard to follow. We seemed to always hit the curling events, which are not action packed excitement, but it was better than nothing.

Each morning I would turn on the computer and check the standings. A number of Canadians work at the same school as I, so our new morning ritual on the bus became a recap of medals, or what story they read about. It certainly isn’t the same to see live action or at least the highlight reel, but it will have to do. As the Olympics are winding down someone discovered a local bar/restaurant will host the final Gold medal hockey tonight. The place is owned by another expat Canadian. Tonight will be final  game, so despite a late school night we plan to be there and cheer Canada on. No matter win or lose to be a part of the action with fellow Canadians will only add to the excitement. Being an expat in China and still able to watch the game for Gold, who would have thought it?

Photo Credit: Canadian Olympic Commitee

Photo Credit: Canadian Olympic committee

Good luck Canada….


Categories: travel | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,

Red #2: Tourist in Your Own Town

Each month I have posted a theme and asked you to join in. For February the theme is RED. I haven’t been getting a lot of participation and asked for suggestions on red post #1. Many readers said keep trying and it may be slow going before it catches on. Thanks so much for your encouragement. I did have some takers this month. Patchwork Ponderings, who has participated before, showed us some RED from The Niagara area in Ontario, Canada. I also had 2 new bloggers visit and post. Debbie had a very cool take on the theme in London, England while Jackie, a fellow Canadian, showed some RED from Toronto, Canada. Visit the orignal RED post (in the comment section) to find their links and check them out. They are worth a peek!

When I first thought of RED I wanted to post something for Chinese New Year, but didn’t have any photos. The other day we were out and I captured this.

Red paper from firecrackers litter the streets.

Red paper from firecrackers litter the streets.

Chinese New Year is the big celebration in China. Some compare it to our Christmas, but I think it is bigger. The holiday lasts 14-15 days. The biggest part of the celebrations take place over 3 days. New Year’s Eve brings loud pops and bangs as firecrackers scare away the evil spirits and bring good luck for the upcoming year.  With pollution at high levels Shanghai was said to limit the amount of fireworks, the much more colourful counterpart of crackers. The newspapers reported less polluting fireworks were also being sold as to still allow the tradition to continue. Despite this New Year’s Eve was still noisy and continued cracks and bangs went on at regular and random intervals for close to 48 hours. Another part of the celebration is a family dinner with all members reuniting. With many migrant workers coming into the city for work, or higher wages it may be the only time they see family. This is not just seeing extended family, but it may be people reuniting with spouses and children.

Chinese New Year involves gifts, but not brightly coloured packages wrapped in bows and coloured patterned paper. Instead crisp bills are placed inside red envelopes. Other gifts often include oranges and sweets like cookies in specially designed gift boxes similar to those we see in shops for Christmas at home. The following photo shows the symbols of Chinese New Year as well as red envelopes hanging on a holiday tree. As far as I know they do not usually decorate tress in the way for the holiday. I think this was more a mix of East and Western cultures done by the local hotel.

Red envolopes and lucky coins with tassels decorated this unique holiday tree.

Red envelopes and lucky coins with tassels decorated this unique holiday tree.

The last photo is to celebrate the start of the olympics. Here are my RED Olympic Canada mittens which I wear here in Shanghai. GO CANADA!

DSC06643There is still time to participate and post something unique, special and RED from where you live. Be a tourist in your own town and share something from where you live. Follow this link to get all the details. Be sure to leave a link back to your post in the comment section of Red #1

Stay tuned…

Categories: Culture, Tourist in My Own Town, Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , ,