1. Cook without spices. Yes Canada, some spice is needed! Everything in Trinidad is extremely spicy and filled with flavor. You are going to have to walk with a bottle of hot sauce hooked to your keychain everywhere you go.
2. Mistake all people from the Caribbean for either Jamaicans or British. Personally, I don’t mind; once they can understand my fast paced halfway-broken-down-not-quite-English-Trini-slang.
3. Form lines for EVERYTHING! A line at the bank, a line going down the elevator, a line at the hot dog stand, a line crossing the road. In my country, people would be jumping over everyone and trampling the grounds to reach somewhere but I have to admit, it’s pretty cool seeing how polite everyone is
4. Say sorry for things they didn’t even do. Yes, I stomped on someone’s foot by accident and they said Sorry about 3x! It’s like a race to see who’s more sorry, the wronged or the wronger
5. Close their bars and restaurants super early. This is alarming for someone who lives in the Caribbean where the party never ends. It’s bizarre when places close at 10 and the alcohol drinking stops at 1 a.m. or 2.a.m
6. Restrict alcohol from the streets. In Trinidad, everyone has a bottle of rum or a beer on the roads, at the beach, outside, inside, anywhere! I find it unbelievable that this is disallowed in the True North!
7. Say “eh” the end of every sentence. Literally, every sentence. I feel like it should be a word in the dictionary by now.
8. Whenever you crave a Tim’s a wild one suddenly appears. There is a Tim Hortons at EVERY single corner and you’d think people would tire of it but people line up orderly of course at every hour of the day to get a bit of the unique Canadian brand of coffee!
9. Wear shorts and flip flops when it’s -5 degrees out. Who does that? I see people jogging and flouncing around when it’s <10 degrees while the islanders are in 10 layers of clothes struggling to even leave the house. Forget the North in GoT; the true Northerners reside here!
10. They fist pump to like every single song. At first I thought it was a onetime thing when I first saw it- like some secret Canadian tradition but it haunted me at every single party. Their dancing consists of wild fist pumps thrust into the air and it somehow goes in time to every genre of music.
11. The people are TOO kind. The bus drivers, the cashiers, the random people crossing the road – it feels like you’re in a Disney World theme park sometimes and all you have to do to fit in is awkwardly nod and smile along.
12. Their milk comes in bags. The drink pop (mysterious drink that = soda). They fancy eating beaver tails (not what it sounds like) and they drench their fries in gravy, bacon and cheese (poutine).
Yeah, this place is going to take some time to get used to!