Arriving in Canada was uneventful. The plane was almost all Chinese speakers, some with Canadian passports but most not. I assume they all had some urgent, pressing reason to visit BC. The customs officials were clearly a little frustrated at how little English they spoke and how poorly they had planned for mandatory quarantine.
I got waved into the VIP (staff) customs line, where i was interviewed about my self-isolation plans. The customs officer was very friendly and gave me a warm welcome back to Canada and a mandatory quarantine guidebook. It was nice to be able to speak English again. We were the only plane landing at the international terminal and nothing was open except the foreign exchange. I got some Canadian dollars out of an ATM to pay the taxi driver.
Some weird culture shock of Canada. At night it is extremely dark, there is almost no light coming from the city. There is hardly anybody outside that i can see from my windows, everyone drives cars. Once i left the airport, nobody was wearing a facemask, but the hotel had perspex barriers up that made the place look like a prison. Fucking tax and tips. Everything you do costs twice as much as you think because of tax and tips. It's ridiculous. Everything has cheese in it. Everything. The internet is so fast. No sites are blocked. The water coming out of the tap doesn't need to be boiled before you drink it, but it is freezing fucking cold. Cooking and eating without chopsticks makes me feel like i have two left hands. And where am i supposed to toss the paper after i wiped my butt? Oh right, you can flush it.
I ordered groceries as soon as i could due to the exasperating proliferation of cheese in every fucking thing on the 8am delivery menu. Staying in this condo for 14 days, it's not really enough time to buy every condiment, so i'm stuck making weirdly simple dishes that don't have much flavor beyond garlic, ginger and Lao Gan Ma.
I think this is the worst jet lag i have ever had. It's literally like day turned to night.
I started looking at what i am going to do in BC. I am worried, man. It is so fucking expensive to do anything here. Rent an EV, expensive. Stay at a motel, expensive. Rent an RV, even more expensive.
Almost all of the places to stay i can find on the internet seem to be aimed at holidaymakers who want some "great outdoors" experience. They all list stuff like mountain view, beach nearby, hiking trail, golf, wineries, whatever the fuck. I do not give a shit about that stuff. Sure i love hiking, but the number one most important thing about any place to stay is if it has internet, coffee, alcohol, food and public transport at walking distance. I.e. civilization. If you don't have civilization nearby, what's the point of paying for accommodation? Might as well be camping.
Except, as it turns out, camping also costs money. Like, a fucking lot of money! More than twice my rent in both Berlin and Shenzhen.
I am also struggling to figure out how to get a local drivers' license and apply for healthcare. For the first 3 months in a Canadian province you are not eligible for government healthcare. To apply for either a local license or healthcare transfer, you need a "permanent" residential address. Which i do not have and ideally would prefer never to have.
I guess i am healthy enough i can just forget about healthcare, and my Ontario drivers' license is still valid till next year, but i feel like i should somehow register myself as a BC resident if i plan to bum around here for a while.
I just don't know if i want to bum around here. Perhaps i am not in the clearest headspace right now because i am jet-lagged and trapped inside a box, but i am feeling really culture shocked and uncomfortable. Why is this condo so fucking huge? What am i supposed to do with a whole lounge room? I keep eating on my bed because i don't know what to do with a table any more. Why doesn't it have fly screens? Why are so many trees? Where are all the people? Where is everybody? I feel lonelier than ever.
I fucking hate lockdown, the hate hate. I hate this shit. It's only been two days. Is it two days? I don't even know how many days. Is it night or day? Fuck!