5 Ani Gloriosi de Canada!
5 Glourious Years in Canada!

By Ovidiu Vaduvescu

These are some brief thoughts of a 35-year-old Romanian immigrant to Canada, published five years after landing in his new country, 25 Sep 1997, a date that has split his life in two parts, each with its "goods" and "bads".

Although I became a Canadian, I remained also a Romanian, both as a citizen and in my heart. Compared to my first 30 years in my native country of Romania (especially the last six when I was on my own), my last 5 years in Canada have been better, maybe much better. That's why I am thankful to God and a few people who helped me in making the big step of getting my visa, and of course to my new country Canada for receiving me here! So here I am, living 7500 Km or an ocean and two continents away from my native place - Craiova, here I am in Canada, maybe not the best country in the world, but for sure the most welcoming place for an immigrant!

Nevertheless, not all my positive expectations about Canada were fulfilled, a few of them failed in a few months, others later in time after I understood how some things work in capitalism. That's why I decided to publish my sincere thoughts here, written in a very informal way, and mostly presenting some facts that I did not expect or like in my new country.

Initially I planned to write this as a small guide for other Romanian immigrants which are considering coming or which will be coming soon to Canada, to help them to expect some "unexpected" in their new country. But my "manuscript" has grown, so I decided to publish it on my website, mostly in Romanian (still the language I know best :-)

Even if I mostly describe some negative things I found in my five (")glorious(") Canadian years, I can not argue at all that it would be better to remain home than to come here or elsewhere (although this is a decision each person should be making and be responsible about)! This is despite the fact that in general the first 3-5 years of most immigrants are the toughest, moreover the success depends mostly on the following main factors: our former jobs and education back home (remember, not all the people are computer programmers!), patience and perseverance here, and last but not the least God's help or some chance (however you would like to name it)!

So, untill our Romanian life will become better back home (and I am still optimistic that will happen sometime, and willing to help), despite these mostly negative reports that you'll read here, for most Romanians I still consider the immigration as a chance to regain their NORMAL life (the BIG reason I left my natal country five years ago). So just a normal life, and not necessarily big money, a great house with a pool and three cars, a fantastic career, or so!

Therefore here are a few thoughts about my new country, expressed after my first 5 glorious Canadian years! The reader should be free to agree or disagree, we are in a democracy here! The website might include an English version sometime (I did not have time for that now, but maybe some Canadian officials will find it, read and take act to improve some things :-) Even while criticizing a bit my new country that offered me a better life, I consider the criticism is a way to improve things in life, mostly in a real democratic capitalism world as Canada! In fact, I just fulfilled a Fundamental Freedom as a Canadian, namely "the freedom of thought, belief, opinion and _expression, including freedom of the press and other media of communications" [quoted from the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, i.e. the Constitution of our very young country, adopted in 1981 by our great Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau (but I do consider Cretien great, too)]. Also I consider criticising a duty for any intellectual, to be expressed at any level and in any political system!

So read these, but please do not generalize! Generally the life in Canada is good, but there are still some (sometime major) things to be improved! Sorry I did not have the time to write a version of my "30 Glorious Years in Romania", for which I would have needed probably a few months of writing and a few GB... :-) But yes, I realized a few things worked a little better in Romania than in Canada! I just hope maybe these will inspire some Romanians back home to do some comparisons of goods and bads between Canada and Romania, the capitalism and the comunism (that I hated there, by the way!) and understand that not everything that's coming from "outside" is necessarily good to "copy".

Sanatatea in Canada
Invatamantul superior in Canada
America seen from Canada
Comertul si business-ul in Canada
Topul celor mai rele firme cu care am avut de-a face in Canada
My small experience with Human Resources Canada
Alte aspecte canadiene...
Drive Test Examination Complaint (Updated Dec 20, 2003)

Sincerely yours,
Ovidiu Vaduvescu

A Canadian-Romanian
Mississauga, ON Canada
Published Sep 25, 2002
(five years after my landing in Canada)

Updated Dec 20, 2003 (Drive Test Examination Complaint)
Updated May 29, 2005 (Minor English improvements to this page only, courtesy of Horia Pituscan).
Updated Oct 23, 2005 (Education in Canada, her Majesty was taken out from the Licence to reproduce Theses document :))
Updated Jul 25, 2010 (Passport Canada, they retired the job requirement list for the guarantor for Canadians living in Canada :)) but continue to ask this for Canadians living abroad, which I continue to believe is not correct!