By Carlie Connolly
Dirt roads or city streets? Small town or hustle and bustle? Relaxed vs. stressful? Country or city?
It has been a month now since I’ve been in the beautiful and yes, relaxed city of Medicine Hat, Alberta. It truly has been a big change, but a good one. Often times, the word ‘change’ means ‘scary’ and I fear it more than I enjoy it. I’ve never been someone that adapts well to change. I find it hard to let go of a chapter and go onto the next.
With this move, I’ve done a lot more writing and a lot less worrying. The change has been a good one. It’s been more relaxing than stressful. No more subways and ‘go, go, go’ attitude of that in Toronto. The thing is, I enjoyed the hustle and bustle of Toronto and the pace of life with people determined to get where they wanted to go. Subways, streetcars, over two million in population and lots of things to do… that was Toronto. The CN Tower and the Blue Jays are what I liked best.
There may have been a bit more to do in the big city, however being here in the Hat, it’s the simplicity of life that I like. Pick up trucks, the countryside, only 70,000 people and nature. It’s the kind of city where there is a place to get away, out of the hustle and bustle and just breathe. I drive five minutes out of the city and I’m at a beautiful look-out point. Police Point Park is one of my favourite places so far to enjoy the beauty around me.
In this city compared to Toronto, you learn to sit back, look at what is around you and just enjoy the ride. In Toronto, you hold your breath and hope there is no traffic, or you plan your commute for an hour, looking at how to deal with the thousands of cars around you.
The one thing important to me is a look out, and I’m not talking about looking at the horses in the field and the beautiful nature, but that’s nice too! I’m talking about being able to take a step back, take a breather, and look at where you are in your life. Sometimes in the big city, you can become intertwined with the craziness of work and commuting that you don’t really realize what life has to offer.
A lot of people in Toronto live to work, and that’s what is good for them, but I’m finding a lot of people here work to live while still loving their job. I’ve seen so many people here smiling and enjoying those around them. Don’t get me wrong, people in Toronto smile too, but it’s after a stressful day in the city, a smile of relief for beating the traffic. Here, it’s just a way of life.
And so, for me, I’m liking the countryside of myself. I’m loving the Hat so far and meeting lots of great people along the way. I’m learning to accept change because often times, change is something great and lots of new and fun experiences come along with it.