All my life I have lived in a largish city. While Ottawa isn’t HUGE, it’s definitely bigger than a “small town.” However, I find that Ottawa definitely has that big city mentality of mind your own business. When I walk down the street, nobody looks each other in the eye. Nobody says hello to each other. Everyone is so focused on their own lives that they don’t pay any attention to anyone around them.
I love living in a largish city. I love the variety of people, I love the things to do, places to eat, and yes, the anonymity of living in a big city. Sometimes it can be really nice to get on a bus, put on your headphones, and melt into the crowd.
Having said that though, I do like walking down the street and being able to share a smile with someone. A nod hello. To just acknowledge the existence of a fellow human being. In fact, it’s one of the things I love most about Barbados. Pass anyone on the street there and you will be acknowledged.
Small Town Values
For the past 2.5 months, I have been living in a small town called Arnprior. I didn’t think I would enjoy it as much as I do. Yes, there’s not a lot to do here. And because I don’t drive, I can’t get around as much as I’d like. However, the people here are really friendly and yesterday and today I was reminded just how friendly. Yesterday I was driven home from work by a woman I had just met. She had to go to the grocery store near where I’m living and when she found out that Megan would have to pack up the baby to come and get me, Louise insisted on driving me home. Today I had a meeting, and while I was waiting for my ride home, four people walked by me on the sidewalk. We all acknowledged each other. We all said hello to each other. A couple actually stopped and we had conversations in the cold, Canadian winter weather. I actually really like calling Arnprior home.