The Story of My Life so Far - Part 60 - July 1979: Arriving in Halifax, Nova Scotia
This is the story of my life so far: 68 years and counting.
Prequel: A Brief History of my Family in France
July 1979: Arriving in Halifax, Nova Scotia
After the Georges Leygues, my next post was in Halifax, Nova Scotia, as a NATO exchange officer with the Canadian Navy.
I flew to Halifax in the summer 1979, and Geneviève came a week later.
I was greeted in Halifax by my predecessor, a French Navy lieutenant-commander whose name I do not remember.
He had found us some dwellings: the house of a Belgian woman, friend of him, who was on vacation for a month when we arrived. We needed to find an apartment to rent before she came back from her vacation.
My predecessor also helped me open a checking account at the his bank, the Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (that now does business as CIBC), one of the Big Five banks of Canada.
With his help and his guarantee, I was able to get approved for a loan so that I could buy a car.
Buying a new car
I was persuaded by my predecessor that I should buy a big American car, like his. In retrospect, that was a mistake, even if the price of gas was quite low at this time.
We visited several car dealers, and I decided to buy a brand new Plymouth Volaré.
1979 Plymouth Volaré
In my opinion, it was a gas-guzzler and it was badly built. However, I kept this car for the 3 years that I stayed in Halifax.
How I discover broccoli
In France, I had read a comics titled "Le Concombre Masqué" (The Masked Cucumber), where the characters are talking vegetables.
In the background of some of the images, I had several times see one vegetable asking another "Vous aimez les brocolis?" (Do you like broccoli). As I did not know what were these "broccolis", I thought that it was something that the comics author had invented and that there was no such thing as broccoli.
One day in Halifax, before the arrival of Geneviève, I went to the local supermarket and, to my surprise, I discovered that they were selling broccolis!
Broccoli at the supermarket
It was a big shock for me, and I realized that I should not have decided that broccoli did not exist, before doing some research. That is a lesson that I have since used for the rest of my life.
A week after I arrived in Halifax, I greeted Geneviève at the airport with my brand new car.
We immediately started to look for an apartment to rent.
Continue to Part 61
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